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Tiger softball drops a pair of conference games

By FRANK ACETO Associate Sports Editor Published: April 19, 2017 12:00 AM
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HUDSON -- They had several baserunners.

Unfortunately for the Lady Tigers, none of them got to touch home plate.

The Twinsburg softball team suffered a commanding 9-0 defeat to Suburban League National Conference rival Hudson April 13 on the road.

Twinsburg, which also suffered a 9-1 loss to National Conference foe Nordonia April 10 in Macedonia, finished with just five hits and three errors. The Lady Tigers stranded eight runners and were just 1-for-11 with runners on base.

"We extended a couple of innings and we had lots of opportunities," Twinsburg head coach Chris Shaffer said. "We didn't get the clutch hits."

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Those lack of clutch hits had something to do with the Lady Explorers' starting right-hander.

Mariah Duncan baffled the Lady Tigers throughout the afternoon to get the win in the pitcher's circle. She pitched all seven innings and finished with eight strikeouts, two walks and two hit batters.

"I thought Mariah pounded the strike zone a little more," Hudson head coach Jeff Kurtz said. "She had good command of all of her pitches. She threw some nice changeups."

Duncan also was a force at the plate.

She had two doubles, a single, three runs batted in and two runs scored.

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Designated player Sara Gedeon had two hits, including a double, two RBIs and a run scored and third baseman Martha Masich had two hits, including a double, and two RBIs for the Lady Explorers (3-4, 3-2).

First baseman Olivia Stefanoni added two hits and a run scored for Hudson.

Right-hander Marissa Thirion also went the distance in the circle for the Lady Tigers. She struck out three batters and issued one walk in six innings of work.

The Lady Explorers had 12 hits and no errors. Twinsburg (1-6, 1-4) had three errors.

Hudson scored a run apiece in the first and second innings.

The Lady Explorers poured it on late in the game.

They scored four times in the fifth and three times in the sixth.

"All the things that we have been talking about and practicing came together," Kurtz said. "It finally sunk in and we did what we had to do. Our approach at the plate was much better. They did a nice job with the off-speed stuff."

Center fielder Jada Farmer, right fielder Najah Thornton and Alexis Lopez reached base twice for the Lady Tigers.

"It's still early in the season," Shaffer said. "We had a really tough four games. All of them were against state-ranked opponents. Every day, things are coming together. We just have to keep working."

Twinsburg was scheduled to host National Conference rivals North Royalton and Brecksville Broadview Heights April 17 and 18. Results of those games were not available at press time.

The Lady Tigers are set to visit Bedford April 21 at 4:30 p.m. They are scheduled to visit North Royalton April 21 at 4:30 p.m.

Twinsburg is set to entertain Cuyahoga Heights April 22 at 11 a.m.

The Lady Tigers are scheduled to visit National Conference foe Stow-Munroe Falls April 24 before returning home to play Wadsworth April 25. Both contests are set to begin at 4:30 p.m.

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