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Softball team moves closer to title

By FRANK ACETO Associate Sports Editor Published: May 7, 2017 12:00 AM
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When it comes to the Tallmadge softball team, the rules are simple.

If the Lady Blue Devils win their last two Suburban League American Conference games, they will be conference champions.

Or, Tallmadge can win one of those games and hope Highland loses one of its games.

One way or another, the Lady Blue Devils are in the driver's seat.

Tallmadge improved to 16-4 overall and 9-1 in the American Conference after posting a come-from-behind 8-5 victory over Revere May 3 in Bath Township.

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As of press time, the Lady Hornets had two losses in conference play. The Lady Blue Devils have a conference road date with Highland in Granger Township and a home game against Aurora remaining on their regular-season schedule.

Against the Lady Minutemen, Tallmadge trailed 4-1 after one inning of play.

But the Lady Blue Devils scored four runs in the third, two runs in the fourth and one run in the fifth to take control.

"We got down 4-0 to Barberton a few games ago," Tallmadge head coach Ed Seeker said. "We fought back and won that game. We have a team that can score quickly and score in bunches.

"The resiliency and the effort of this team has grown since the beginning of the year."

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Gia Spitali had a two-run double in the fourth. She finished with two hits and also scored a run.

Alyssa Garbinsky had three hits, including a double, and a run batted in and Madison Rearick had two hits, including a double, an RBI and a run scored for the Lady Blue Devils.

Also faring well for Tallmadge were Jordyn Severns, who had a single, two runs scored and an RBI, and Olivia Ayres, who had a double and two runs scored.

Left-hander Hallie Mullett got the win in the pitcher's circle to improve to 7-2 in 2017. She finished with four strikeouts and two walks in seven innings of work.

The Lady Blue Devils had 13 hits and no errors and Revere had seven hits and four errors.

"There is a lot of self confidence on the team, one through nine in the batting order," Seeker said. "It was one of the few games where we played errorless ball."

Tallmadge earned a 4-3 win over Northwest April 27 in Canal Fulton.

The Lady Blue Devils scored three runs in the top of the third to take a 4-1 lead and held on the rest of the way.

Tallmadge had nine hits and two errors. Northwest had six hits and no errors.

Ayres led the Lady Blue Devils with three hits, including a double, and a run scored.

Teammate Autumn Malicoat had two hits, including a triple, an RBI and a run scored.

Severns had two hits and an RBI and Rearick had a single, a walk, two runs scored and an RBI for Tallmadge.

Right-hander Emily Pratt got the win the circle. She allowed one earned run in four innings of work to improve to 9-2 in 2017. Mullett pitched the last three innings.

"We left a lot of people on base against Northwest," Seeker said. "We didn't play that great of a game."

Tallmadge's road game against Highland May 4 was rained out. No make-up date was available at press time.

The Lady Blue Devils are scheduled to host the Lady Greenmen May 8 at 4:30 p.m.

Tallmadge received the No. 2 seed and a first-round bye in the Canton Division II sectional-district tournament.

Akron Archbishop Hoban got the top seed and Field and Akron St. Vincent-St. Mary earned the third and fourth seeds, respectively.

The Lady Blue Devils are set to entertain the Northwest-Akron Kenmore winner in a sectional title contest May 11 at 4:30 p.m.

"The way we're rolling right now, we can beat anybody in our district," Seeker said.

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