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Rob Potter | Democrat

Tuxedo’s Stephanie Purdy, right, slides under the tag of Eldred catcher Kaitlin Terry to score a run during the top of the third inning of Monday afternoon’s non-league softball game in Eldred.

Tuxedo defeats Eldred, 10-3, in non-league softball game

By Rob Potter
ELDRED — May 21, 2010 — The Tuxedo Lady Tornadoes jumped out to an 8-0 lead in the first three innings of Monday afternoon’s non-league softball game against the host Eldred Lady Yellowjackets.
That lead propelled Tuxedo (12-2) to a 10-3 victory.
The Lady Tornadoes scored two runs in the top of the first inning and six runs in the top of the third to grab the early advantage.
The first batter of the game, Brittany Burton, drew a walk from Lady Yellowjackets’ pitcher Alexis Pierce. Mae Comerford then ripped a ground-rule double to deep left field to score Burton. After Pierce recorded a strikeout, Comerford crossed home plate as Emily Vance singled to left field.
Pierce struck out the side in the top of the second, but Tuxedo added to its 2-0 lead in the top of the third. With two runners on base, Vance hit a ground-rule double to left field to bring Comerford in to score. Stephanie Purdy then scored on Kelly Ross’ infield hit.
Moments later, Vance scored on an error to make it a 5-0 game. Kearstin Ross then singled to center field, which allowed both Kelly Ross and Corianna DeLisi to cross home plate. Kearstin Ross scored the final run of the frame when Comerford singled to center field.
Faced with an eight-run deficit, Eldred (4-11) got on the scoreboard in the bottom of the fifth.
Emily Bisland began the inning with an infield hit and promptly stole second base. After advancing to third base when Rachel Hofaker grounded out, Bisland scored when Jill Harris doubled down the right field line. Tomara Bodnaruik reached base on a infield hit and stole second base to put runners on second and third with just one out. Lauren Hazen had a bunt single, which Lady Tornadoes’ catcher DeLisi fielded. DeLisi then threw the ball to third baseman Vance in attempt to tag out Harris, who was a few steps off the bag. But Harris took off for home plate and safely slid under the tag by DeLisi to score the Lady Yellowjackets’ second run of the afternoon.
After Tuxedo pitcher Kelly Ross got the next batter to fly out, Kaitlin Terry reached base on an error. Bodnaruik, who went 3-for-4 in the game, scored on the miscue to cut the Lady Tornadoes’ lead to 8-3.
But Tuxedo answered with a pair of runs in the top of the sixth. Vance began the inning with an infield single. After a fly out, Kayla Casse belted the ball to deep right center field. She quickly circled the bases for a two-run, inside-the-park home run to give the Lady Tornadoes a 10-3 advantage.
Kelly Ross set the Lady Yellowjackets down in order in the bottom the sixth.
In its final at-bat, Eldred managed to put two runners on base. But Harris was forced out at second base and Hazen was stranded at second base when Kelly Ross induced a infield fly ball which first baseman Stephanie Purdy caught for the final out of the game.
“I enjoyed the way we played aggressively,” Tuxedo Coach Michelle Micklos said. “I always encourage my team to play aggressively, no matter the score, no matter the inning.”
Micklos also praised the Lady Yellowjackets for being a good team.
“Eldred plays with a lot of spirit,” she said. “The team stays upbeat. Even in the last inning, you could hear them saying that they needed seven runs to tie the score.”
Eldred Coach Kelly Doherty noted that the key to the game was Tuxedo’s six-run inning.
“They had a big inning in the top of the third,” she said. “They were able put hits together to score six runs.”
Doherty noted that hitting is one aspect of the game that her players have struggled with this season.
“Early in the game, they haven’t been able to get comfortable in the [batter’s] box,” she said. “We have to focus on hitting the ball.”

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