BELLAIRE It was the spring skirmish for the "Battle for Guernsey Street" between Bellaire and St. John Central on Amanda's Field in Bellaire with the Irish claiming both games of the doubleheader.
The first went to St. John 5-2 and the second 5-1 as Irish ace Hannah Absalom notched 21 strike outs along the way.
"Hannah showed her toughness this week, she has been sick since Wednesday but just goes out there and gives it her all," said Irish mentor Jerry Magistro. "To be able to do that against a good team, I take my hat off to her.
ST. JOHN’S Kaydie Coppa slides into a tag by Bellaire’s Morgan Runyon during Saturday’s game at Amanda’s Field in Bellaire.?The Lady Irish swept the doubleheader.
"I think all of our kids stepped it up in both games today, I give them credit, because they came today and they were focused; They wanted this win," Magistro added. "They don't care what size of the school they are playing, we feel we can play with anybody."
Morgan DeLuca had the only extra base hit for the Irish in the opener with a double, Sydney Helms had 2 singles and an RBI while Caitlin Sliva and Cheyenne Harris added an RBI singles.
Trailing 5-0 in the top of the seventh Bellaire's Elisha Gillespie blasted a 2-run shot over the fence accounting for the Big Reds' runs in the first game. Taylor Canter also had a triple while Mary Garloch added a pair of singles.
"It is disappointing, we are hitting the ball again, we are getting on base, but we are not getting timely hitting," said Bellaire coach Melissa Lahna. "I feel our defense is letting us down, we gave four or five away this week, in the last four games that is the most errors we have had all season, I don't know if it is nerves, I don't know if we're not ready but we need to come back together and find that pep."
Once again the second game was a close contest until the bottom of the third inning when St. John broke it open with a four-run burst. Absalom and DeLuca both doubled before Helms singled and Kristen Russell pushed in the fourth run with an RBI single. Sliva added the fifth run with a solo shot in the fifth.
Bellaire's lone run came in the fourth when Megan Ging drew a free pass and Mackenzie Conroy tripled her across the dish.
The Big Reds (17-7) finish up on the road next week with Edison and Bridgeport remaining while the Irish start their week hosting Buckeye Trail.
Bellaire 000 000 2 2 6 3
St. John 004 010 x 5 8 1
Batteries: Ging and Conroy. Absalom and DeLuca.
Bellaire 000 100 0 1 3 1
St. John 004 010 x 5 6 0
Batteries: Ging and Conroy. Absalom & DeLuca.