By KEN MORSE
The Blue Devils showed some resilience shaking off a pair of lopsided losses to Bristol Eastern and Bristol Central. Plainville strung together the longest win streak in five years and now stands halfway toward their state tournament goal for the first time since 2014.
“This team has a little bit of fight in them,” said Plainville head coach Scott Marcucio. “They work hard and are looking to get better every day. They learn from the good and learn from the bad.”
“We got out of those two Bristol games and went out and worked on a few things in practice and they didn’t let those losses effect them. The changes are showing up a little bit at a time and the focus to get better is there.”
On April 11 the Blue Devils took care of Innovation to the tune of an 11-2 win to get back on track. That was followed by a convincing 18-2 victory over Hartford Public.
Plainville pitcher Kayla Wisz (8K) and catcher Aliana Shover were hooked up in battle with Innovation through four innings with the Blue Devils clinging to a 2-1 advantage. A nine run outburst over the final three innings led Plainville to victory plating four in the fifth and three more in the seventh.
Kaylee Lamothe had a day at the plate going 4-for-4 with two doubles, two triples and three RBI. Annie Roux had three hits with a double and a triple, knocking in three runs. Shai Durham went 4-for-4 with three runs scored.
The Blue Devils erupted for 13 runs in the second inning against Hartford Public to put this game in their back pocket. Mackenzie Alvarado worked three innings in the circle striking out four and Whitney Southall finished up tossing two no-hit innings striking out three.
Makayla Caron unloaded a double and a triple to spark the offense with Roux going 3-for-3 with a double and a triple driving in two runs and scoring four times. Grace DiMinno belted three hits including a double with two runs scored.
Wisz had a double with three hits, four runs and two RBI. Lamothe had three hits, one run scored and one RBI. The Blue Devils played errorless ball in the field winning their second game in a row.
Alvarado spun a four-hitter striking out 11 in a 7-0 win over MLC last Tuesday to make it three wins in a row for the Blue Devils as Plainville improved to 4-2 on the season.
Two run uprisings in the first two innings gave the Blue Devils a 4-0 cushion heading into the fourth inning. The Blue Devils tacked on single runs over the next three innings to put the game away.
Alvarado led the hit parade belting a double and triple driving in two runs and Makayla Caron added a double to pace an offense that hung 36 runs on the board belting out 10 doubles and 6 triples over the three game winning streak.
“We are making contact and driving the ball,” said Marcucio. “We have been working on situations with two runners on how are we going to get that run in. Against Hall we just couldn’t catch up to their pitcher. We made contact but not consistent contact.”
On April 18 against Hall the winning streak was snapped in a 15-0 loss when both pitchers and or the umpire momentarily lost the strike zone. Wisz and Sophie Garner of Hall both walked the bases loaded in the first inning.
A dropped fly ball, an infield single and another walk with the bases loaded handed Hall a 3-0 lead. Plainville had the sacks full in the bottom of the first with walks to Annie Roux, Alvarado and Makayla Caron.
The Blue Devils couldn’t cash in on the opportunity as a third to home fielder’s choice and a strikeout ended the potential rally. Plainville threatened putting two runners or more on base in five of the seven innings but stranded 11 base runners.
Garner ended up issuing eight walks to the Blue Devils but struck out 15. The Hall pitcher also sparked the offense with three hits including a home run over the centerfield fence and went on to score four runs and drive in four runs.
Plainville will look to get back to their winning ways this week when they take on East Hartford on Monday, will be home to Avon on Wednesday and finish out the week at Enfield on Friday and at Maloney on Saturday.