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T&Js captures Minor League softball title

By Kenny Varner
YEAGERTOWN – Two teams with one goal met Sunday evening at Yeagertown’s Meadowfield when Decatur 1 went up against T&Js Sports for the Mifflin County Minor League softball title.
The game had a little bit everything put out, multiple hitters, home runs, triples, doubles, steals and strong defensive plays.
Both teams had it’s A-game going but on this night the T&Js Sports had what it took to come out 19-7 winners to officially end the 2017 regular season softball campaign.
The team’s coach Brandon Basom was very proud of his team and their performance.
“These girls play hard all the time constantly. When their down somebody brings them up,” Basom said. “There is one hit somewhere that always turns things around. The always give 100 percent all year round. Every girl pitches in when they need to. Tonight was just like every other game. The gave 100 percent and played well.”
Highlighting the game for the winners was
a grand slam inside-the-park home run by starting pitcher Olivia Fisher.
Despite the loss, Decatur starting hurler Ryanna Smith struck out five batters in three innings on the mound.
After holding T&Js scoreless in the bottom of the first, Decatur started the scoring, picking up two runs.
Jaima Shilling and Kaitlyn Jefferys both walked to start off the inning.
Shilling stole second and third and scored on a single by Sam Fye.
Jefferys later scored on an RBI fielders choice by Georgia Fake.
With a 2-0 advantage, Decatur held the early lead.
“I’m very proud of these girls. They played their hearts out,” said Decatur manager Janee Smith. “They did very well. They have really improved. Six of these girls have never played for me before. I was very impressed on how they improved during the year, hitting and fielding.”
In the top of the second, T&Js rallied for five runs to take back the lead in grand fashion.
Jalee Bodtorf, who was just a home run short of the cycle, led off the inning with a triple to right field.
With one out, Gracelynn Beckenbaugh reached when she was plunked with a Decatur offering.
Addison Hook walked to load the bases for Marlee Basom.
Basom showed much patience at the plate, picking up an RBI walk, cutting the Decatur lead in half.
Tess King followed with a walk of her own and scored Beckenbaugh to knot the game at two.
Kaidense Conner moved everyone up a base by hustling out an infield hit, giving her team the lead.
With two out, Dayna Zeiders brought two more runners in posting a 2RBI double to left.
Defensively, T&Js shut down Decatur in the bottom of the inning and went right back to work in the third.
Rosie Yoder opened things up with a walk as did teammate Kayla Deshong, putting runners on first and second with no outs.
After posting its first out of the inning, Macaela Christie loaded the bases with the third walk of the inning.
Fisher then stepped to the plate and blasted a shot deep into centerfield. With her speed she followed her teammates home with an inside-park-homer.
They would add yet another run and go into the bottom of the inning leading 10-2.
Decatur was able to manufacture four of those runs back as Jefferys, Fye, Smith and Fake all scored to cut into the lead 10-6.
But from there, T&Js, without injured player Rochelle Sunderland, was able to hold Decatur to just one run while it’s offense was able to pick up nine runs in the final two innings to secure the victory.

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