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Bald Eagle muscles out tough contest versus Bellefonte

By Kenny Varner

WINGATE – Back at it!

Bellefonte and Bald Eagle Area were back to due battle on the softball diamond in a Tuesday afternoon affair at Bald Eagle Area High School.

Defense took center stage early and often on both sides.

“Sierra (Albright) knows she has a good support system behind her. She pitched very well also tonight,” said Bald Eagle Area coach Don Lucas. “We made some nice plays on defense. I thought Addisyn Burns played well tonight at shortstop. We stung the ball tonight.“

But in the end, the Lady Eagles would make the most of their opportunities as they outlasted Bellefonte 4-0.

Bald Eagle Area hurler Sierra Albright notched the victory. Albright went the distance scattering four hits through out while striking out nine. Carley Clarkson took the loss for the Lady Raiders.

The Lady Eagles scored a lone run in the first and that would be in the bottom of the fifth as both defenses kept control of the contest.

After a scoreless top of the first for Bellefonte, the Bald Eagle struck in  its first at bats. Lead off hitter Kailey Eckert blasted a triple down the right field line.

Teammate Addisyn Burns brought Eckert home hitting a sacrifice fly to left field.

Shae Housel kept the inning going singling to right. Ava Stere, who recently joined the 100 hit club, also hit one into right.

Sydney Thompson loaded the bases as she reached on a Red Raider miscue.

But the Red Raider defense kept the damage to just one run as Clarkson and company forced a fly out and a groundout to shortstop to end the inning.

“Our defense was really on point. Bald Eagle hit ones in the gap and you can’t control those,” said Bellefonte coach Erica DeVinney. “But we played really good defense tonight. Our hits, like the last time we played them, we were just one run away from getting a run.”

Jaylee Lose walked to start the second. She was replaced by pinch runner Mackenzie Ellenberger.

Grace Novitsky roped a single into left. Ellenberger was caught trying to advance to third as she was caught in a run down.

Despite getting hits by Sienna Uberti and Eckert, the Red Raiders were able to end the threat.

Bellefonte’s defense shined again in the third as they were able to catch Stere leaning off first after a single into right.

Things looked promising for the Red Raiders in the fourth. Taylor Brown singled and later moved up to second.

With two outs, Novitsky joined Brown on base.

But like in the previous inning, the Lady Eagles defense held, keeping the score at 1-0.

With a runner on base in the bottom of the fourth, Bellefonte right fielder Sadie Ripka made a run saving catch as she made a diving catch and thwarting a possible Bald Eagle score.

Bald Eagle padding its lead in the bottom of the fourth plating two runs.

With two outs, Thompson reached on a Bellefonte miscue.

That set the stage for Alexis Baney. Baney did not disappoint sending a screaming double into left centerfield, scoring Baney on the play.

Taylor Habovick followed with a RBI double of her own, upping the lead to 3-0.

From there the Lady Eagles defense took over from there, keeping Bellefonte in check in its final two at bats.

In the sixth, the Eagles added an insurance run, taking the contest in a 4-0 Laurel Highlands victory.

Bald Eagle Area  4, Bellefonte 0

BEL 000 000 0 – 0 4 2

BEA 100 021 x – 4 12 1

WP: Sierra Albright

LP: Carley Clarkson

Multiple hitters: BEL –  BEA –  Kailey Eckert 3-for-4, 2 runs. Shae Housel 2-for-4, RBI, Ava Stere 2-for-4..

HR: BEL –  None. BEA –  None.

3B: BEL –  None. BEA –  Kailey Eckert.

2B: BEL – None. BEA –  Alexa Baney, Taylor Habovick.

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