Softball: Athol denies Mohawk shot at playoff berth

  • Athol’s Sadey Lehtomaki knocks a hard foul ball against Mohawk in the top of the fifth inning Wednesday in Buckland. STAFF PHOTO/DAN LITTLE

  • Athol’s Sadey Lehtomaki knocks in a run against Mohawk in the top of the sixth inning Wednesday in Buckland. STAFF PHOTO/DAN LITTLE

  • Athol baserunner Roz Nelson (11), right, slides safely into second base ahead of the tag from Mohawk’s Raegan Dupree in the top of the fifth inning Wednesday in Buckland. STAFF PHOTO/DAN LITTLE

  • Athol’s Jenna St. Cyr hits an RBI single against Mohawk in the top of the fourth inning Wednesday in Buckland. STAFF PHOTO/DAN LITTLE

  • Athol’s Reilly Polana, left, throws the ball in from left field in the bottom of the fifth inning against Mohawk, Wednesday in Buckland. STAFF PHOTO/DAN LITTLE

  • Athol’s Haley Bigwood knocks a hard foul ball against Mohawk in the top of the fifth inning Wednesday in Buckland. STAFF PHOTO/DAN LITTLE

  • Athol pitcher Lindsey Leblanc throws against Mohawk in the bottom of the seventh inning Wednesday in Buckland. STAFF PHOTO/DAN LITTLE

  • Mohawk baserunner Grace Ward, right, slides safely into third base ahead of the tag from Athol’s Jenna St. Cyr in the bottom of the fifth inning Wednesday in Buckland. STAFF PHOTO/DAN LITTLE

  • Mohawk baserunner Isis Moon slides safely into home plate to score against Athol in the bottom of the fifth inning Wednesday in Buckland. STAFF PHOTO/DAN LITTLE

  • Mohawk’s Caitlin Johnston hits into a fielders choice against Athol in the bottom of the sixth inning Wednesday in Buckland. STAFF PHOTO/DAN LITTLE

  • Mohawk first baseman Grace Ward, left, fields a bunt from Athol baserunner Kendall Deleo (5) in the top of the sixth inning Wednesday in Buckland. STAFF PHOTO/DAN LITTLE

  • Mohawk pitcher Nola Bloomer, left, strikes out Athol batter Reily Polana in the top of the seventh inning Wednesday in Buckland. STAFF PHOTO/DAN LITTLE

  • Mohawk’s Grace Ward stretches for an out at first base against Athol baserunner Haley Wrigley in the top of the third inning Wednesday in Buckland. STAFF PHOTO/DAN LITTLE

  • Mohawk’s Ashley Reynold’s hits an RBI single against Athol in the bottom of the fifth inning Wednesday in Buckland. STAFF PHOTO/DAN LITTLE

  • Mohawk catcher Morgan Roccio throws to first for an out against Athol in the top of the fifth inning Wednesday in Buckland. STAFF PHOTO/DAN LITTLE

  • Mohawk’s Isis Moon hits an RBI double against Athol in the bottom of the fifth inning Wednesday in Buckland. STAFF PHOTO/DAN LITTLE

  • Mohawk shortstop (2) throws to first against Athol in the top of the fifth inning Wednesday in Buckland. STAFF PHOTO/DAN LITTLE

  • Mohawk pitcher Nola Bloomer throws against Athol in the top of the sixth inning Wednesday in Buckland. STAFF PHOTO/DAN LITTLE

  • Mohawk pitcher Nola Bloomer reels in a pop fly for an out against Athol in the top of the fourth inning Wednesday in Buckland. STAFF PHOTO/DAN LITTLE

  • Mohawk shortstop Caitlin Johnston throws to first for an out against Athol in the top of the fourth inning Wednesday in Buckland. STAFF PHOTO/DAN LITTLE

  • Athol’s Haley Bigwood sends the ball out to right field in the top of the third inning Wednesday in Buckland. STAFF PHOTO/DAN LITTLE

Recorder Intern
Published: 5/29/2019 9:46:51 PM

BUCKLAND — The Athol High School softball team denied Mohawk a chance to clinch a playoff berth, Wednesday. The visiting Red Raiders took a 6-4 decision over the Warriors in Franklin County League action. 

Athol (11-8 overall, 4-8 FCL) came back for revenge against its league rival, bouncing back after a 7-6 loss to the Warriors last week on May 21.

“I didn’t want to be a spoiler but I know (Mohawk) needed one more win to get into tournament and we lost to them last time, so it was good.” said Athol head coach Sharon Chauvette.

Athol had begun to make a comeback late in the teams’ first matchup, but was not able to seal the deal. 

In Wednesday’s game, Haley Bigwood started things off for the Raiders in the first inning, with Mohawk shortstop Caitlin Johnston unable to make a difficult catch in shallow left field. After stealing second, Bigwood would score thanks to an RBI single from Sadey Lehtomaki to give the Raiders a quick 1-0 lead.

The Raiders put two more runs on the board in the top of the fourth inning, as Reily Polana scored off a Jenna St. Cyr single, and Celeste Torraco crossed the plate after a passed ball.

In the bottom of the fourth inning, Mohawk began its slow crawl in an attempt to come back. After a single from Isis Moon, the defense relapsed, as an errant throw from Bigwood moved Moon to third base and a passed ball scored her.

The Moon landing opened up a huge fifth inning for the Warriors, as they plated three runs over five hits, highlighted by Moon’s double right in the middle of things.

“I feel like whoever starts off (the inning) with a hit, our team feeds off of it and people start getting hits, but as soon as we get one or two outs, everyone gets down on themselves. We just need to start off an inning strong,” said Johnston. 

The Mohawk fan base agreed that the sixth inning is always the most pivotal for the Warriors, as it usually ends in either great success or failure. Unfortunately for the home team, the latter was in affect, as starting pitcher Nola Bloomer walked four of the first six batters in the inning.

Athol scored three runs in that sixth inning to put it out of reach for the Warriors. Red Raiders starting pitcher Lindsay LeBlanc sealed the deal with a three-strikeout seventh inning. 

Bigwood, St. Cyr, Lehtomaki, Torraco and Rozlyn Nelson had the five hits for Athol, each of them smacking a single. Bigwood, St. Cyr, and Lehtomaki all drove in runs.

For Mohawk, Moon went 2-for-4 with an RBI double and two runs scored, Johnston went 3-for-4 with a run scored, and Ashley Reynolds went 2-for-3 with a triple.

Both pitchers went the distance, as LeBlanc allowed 10 hits, four runs, four walks and recorded eight strikeouts. Bloomer allowed six runs, five hits and eight walks to go with four strikeouts.

The Warriors would have secured a postseason berth with a win against Athol, but the loss drops them to 9-10 overall. They must now win their season finale against McCann Tech on Friday to join the Division 3 tournament field. Athol already secured a spot in the playoffs with a win over Chicopee last weekend. The Raiders close their regular season against Gardner today.

Athol 6, Mohawk 4

Athol .................................... 100 203 0 — 6  5  3

Mohawk .............................  000 130 0 — 4  10  2

Hits: (A) St. Cyr, Lehtomaki, Nelson, Torraco, Bigwood. (M) Lesieur, Johnston 3, Ward, Moon 2, Reynolds 2, Guy.

2B: (M) Moon.

3B: (M) Reynolds.

RBI: (A) St. Cyr, Bigwood. (M) Bloomer, Moon, Reynolds.

WP: Leblanc (7ip, 8k, 4bb).

LP: Bloomer (7ip, 4k, 8bb).


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