There were a pair of no-hitters in area softball Friday, as Corinth's Hannah Grady survived seven walks in a 7-0 shutout of Argyle, and Fort Ann's Taylor Foran took the ball for the Cardinals in a 13-0 no-hitter against Whitehall.
-- It was the first career no-hitter for both pitchers.
-- Grady struck out 11 batters and her defense kept her seven free passes from materializing as runs, as none of the Scots' runners advanced beyond second base. Grady helped herself by going 3 for 4 at the plate with two doubles and two RBIs. Corinth also got a triple, double and single from Chesney York, and a home run, single and two RBIs from Mya Manning.
-- Foran, pitching for the second time this season, struck out seven for Fort Ann, which also got a grand slam from Allison Vrooman. The Cardinals improved to 4-1 in the Adirondack League, 6-1 overall.
-- Also Friday, Ticonderoga gutted out a 1-0 victory over Saranac in Champlain Valley Athletic Conference action. Haleigh Wright scored the game's only run on an error in the first inning. The Chiefs threatened in the seventh with a two-out ground-rule double put runners at second and third, but Sentinels pitcher Cyley Quigley induced a pop-up to end the game. Quigley finished with a two-hitter, with one strikeout and three walks.
Cambridge at Greenwich:
I was able to make to Greenwich for the second game in two days between Wasaren League leaders Greenwich and Cambridge on Friday.
-- Greenwich has the luxury of having one of the top pitchers in Section II hurling the ball -- Rachel Hall is a lefty with a dynamite arm and a growing array of pitches.
-- Cambridge -- fresh off facing Hall on Thursday -- was able to time her out somewhat after the second inning Friday, as the Indians rallied from an early 11-0 deficit to close within 14-9 by the end of the showdown of the Wasaren League's top two teams. Cambridge got eight hits off of Hall and took advantage of four Witches' errors to trim Greenwich's lead.
-- The Witches had pulled out a 5-4 win over the Indians in eight innings on Thursday, after Cambridge rallied to tie the score.
"It was pretty good softball the first six innings, then we got kind of nervous, made sloppy plays, and you open up the door," Greenwich coach Greg McGuirk said. "And you can’t do that too many times before you get caught."
-- Greenwich is playing seven games in five days this week -- the Witches beat Tamarac on Tuesday, swept a doubleheader with Waterford on Wednesday, then beat Cambridge in back-to-back games. On Saturday, they are scheduled to play in the Ballston Spa Tournament at the Luther Forest Athletic Fields in Malta.
-- Cambridge opened the game with No. 2 pitcher Gabbie Woods, a lefty, but the Witches roughed her up with nine hits and 11 runs in the first two innings. Greenwich's Sabrina Whitehouse, Courtney Fraher and Hall each had two hits in the first two innings -- and Whitehouse added a third hit at the end of the second, a two-run single off the Indians' Miranda Seacord, Cambridge's No. 1 starter who entered with no outs. Hall, Jen Wilbur and Eliza Jordan joined Whitehouse in belting a two-run hit in the first two innings.
-- Seacord was able to hold Greenwich to five hits the rest of the way, but she did give up three runs in the sixth as Whitehouse drove in a run and another scored on an error. Whitehouse then scored her third run of the day on a base hit by Fraher.
-- The Indians scored three unearned runs in a four-run third inning, getting an RBI single from Woods and scoring three runs on two errors. Seacord ripped a two-run double to the right-field fence in the fourth to pull Cambridge within 11-6. Down 14-6 in the seventh, the Indians got an RBI single from Seacord and scored twice on errors to complete the scoring.
"I’m happy with the way they played after the first two innings, though," Cambridge coach Gerald Clifton said. "We’re off to a good start, the girls are going in the right direction. ... That’s what our goal is -- get into the playoffs, try to make a run."
-- Greenwich (9-0) was ranked fourth in the state in Class C this week, while Cambridge (now 4-2) was 13th.
"Our record doesn't matter to me -- us getting better does," McGuirk told his players in their postgame huddle.
-- McGuirk has been pleased with the play of sophomore catcher Courtney Fraher, who went 4 for 5 at the plate with two doubles and two RBIs.
"Court’s clearly a legit catcher, and I think as she works, potentially a great catcher," McGuirk said. "She really can hold runners, she sets up good, frames well and really knows the game. She’s really an ideal catcher. A lot of times you have one or the other -- you either have a kid with an arm or a kid who can really catch. She’s potentially the whole package."
"I’m glad she’s behind the plate, I trust her," Hall said of Fraher. "I know she’s got my back and I’ve got hers."
-- Greenwich, which won four straight Section II titles from 2011-14 (and one state title in 2012), has fallen short in sectional play the last two years. Hall and her teammates -- most of whom played the last couple of seasons -- are hoping to use their experience to return to the state playoffs.
"We definitely have what it takes," Hall said. "We had a lot of inexperience the last couple of years. Now we have a lot of girls returning -- we only lost Gabby (VanDeWater) last year. We have a confidence and a desire to get that win and move on. I can definitely see us making a longer run this year."
"I certainly think we have enough out there to go the distance, we just have to make it come together," McGuirk said. "And if we have a bad game, I hope it’s long before we get to sectionals."