Friday, December 13, 2013
By Matt DiFilippo firstname.lastname@example.org
FAIRFIELD -- Lawrence is now a good enough softball team that opponents have to use all their resources to pull out a win. That's what Skowhegan pitcher Kaitlyn Therriault did on Thursday.
Therriault isn't overpowering, but she struck out eight and didn't walk a batter as Skowhegan earned a 4-1 Kennebec Valley Athletic Conference Class A victory.
"I think the difference was, she was able to change speeds," Skowhegan coach Lee Johnson said. "Our pitchers can't beat you by throwing all fastballs. They're going to have to throw their spins, they're going to have to locate their pitches, and they're going to have to change speeds.
"When they do that, they can be pretty effective. That's what I think Kaitlyn did. She started getting her changeup going, and then they didn't know which pitch was coming, and they couldn't sit on the fastball."
Therriault gave up three straight singles -- the latter two on bunts -- in the sixth inning. Lawrence ran into two outs on the bases and settled for one run in the inning. After that, Therriault didn't allow a runner past first base.
"(The changeup) wasn't really working the first part of the game," Therriault said.
Skowhegan (10-5), which beat the Bulldogs 14-1 in their last meeting, scored a run in the first when Shelby Obert doubled on the game's first pitch and eventually scored on an overthrow. Mikayla Toth (3 for 4) started a two-run rally in the third inning, and got another run in the fourth off a Lawrence error before pitcher Sarah Martin retired Skowhegan's 3-4 hitters with the bases loaded to keep the score at 4-1.
"I like that the last time we lost 14-1 to these guys, and today we lost 4-1," Lawrence coach Joey Marcoux said. "So I like it that we've still made a huge leap from the first five games of our season. I don't like it that we reverted back to handing over runs again. They hit the ball well, but we made four (errors). You can't give a good team extra baserunners. Sarah pitched a great game."
With two games left, Lawrence (6-8) is still in the top nine in the Eastern A Heal points -- and this is after starting 1-4, with those four losses by an aggregate score of 55-3.
"It hurts to lose to them when we've been going so well, but we need to regroup," Marcoux said. "We're focused on Hampden now, and we'll worry about Erskine when that game rolls around, and we'll go from there."
Matt DiFilippo -- 861-9243