Pittsfield's Rally Falls Short in Western Mass Final
WESTFIELD, Mass. -- A seven-run second inning could not do it.
Neither could 14-4 deficit after the fifth inning.
Nothing could quiet the Pittsfield softball bench or the Pittsfield softball bats.
But the Generals ran out of outs on Friday in the Western Massachusetts Division 1 Championship Game, and the host Bombers prevailed, 14-10.
Pittsfield pounded out four home runs in the last two innings to make a game of it, and the game ended with two Generals in scoring position.
But Westfield pitcher Erin Gour got a pair of strikeouts to end it, giving her 11 for the game and sending the third-seeded Bombers (12-3) on to Monday's state semi-final against Central Division champion Wachusett (15-3).
"First pitch to the last out, they never quit," Pittsfield coach Jim Clary said. "You could see it on the bench. Never thougth they were out of the game.
"We could score eight, 10 runs an inning easily. We've done it before."
Pittsfield (10-5) struck first on Friday when the heart of its lineup -- Mia Arpante, Mia Potash and Mia Alfonso -- delivered consecutive basehits to generate a pair of runs in the top of the first.
Westfield answered in the second with a seven-run rally that featured a three-run homer by Allie Rehor, who went 2-for-4 with four RBIs en route to winning the tournament MVP award.
In the third, Pittsfield got a sacrifice fly from Alyssa Mercier, and Sophia Santos drew a bases loaded walk as they cut the deficit to 7-4.
The Bombers tacked on three in the third and four in the fifth to take a double-digit lead on Rehor's RBI double to make it 14-4.
In between, Gour pitched her way out of a one-out, bases-loaded jam in the top of the fifth. She ended up stranding 14 runners in seven innings.
But the Generals plated four in the top of the sixth -- three off the bats of Potash and Alfonso, who homered back-to-back.
Then, with one out, Julianna Johansen drew a walk, moved up on a bean ball and a Santossingle and scored on Natalie Arnhold's RBI single to make it 14-8.
In the seventh, Alfonso and Mercier hit solo home runs back-to-back to get the Generals within four. Then Jordynn Bazinet and Abby Lummus reached on a single and an error, respectively, with one out. But Gour got the strikeouts she needed to end the game.
"It was nice to see Alyssa Mercier, in her last at-bat get a home run," Clary said of one of three seniors on this year's squad, along with Potash and Lexi Sondrini.
"It was tough. It was a tear-jerker out there. I was with them coaching two years ago when they were sophomores. And they really stepped up to lead the team this year and play the PHS way."