Connolly Connects

Mashpee shortstop Maggie Connolly takes a swing against Falmouth High during a home game on Tuesday.

Middleboro High pulled away in the latter innings and blew its game open against the Mashpee High softball team yesterday, May 9, sending the Falcons below the .500 mark for the first time this season. Middleboro pounded out 14 hits and scored a 13-1 victory on its home field.

MHS lost its second game of the week. Against Falmouth the Falcons led until the last inning. Middleboro did not let them hang around as long as the dropped the visitors to a 5-6 record for the season.

The Sachems scored single runs in the first and second innings before Mashpee used an RBI from Sydney Puchol to make it 2-1 in the top of the fourth. Middleboro countered with two runs of its own in the bottom of the inning and then got four more in the fifth to put the game out of reach.

Mashpee’s hitters were held to just four knocks in the game.

Mashpee High came one inning away from pulling off an impressive upset against a Falmouth team that has been running red hot over the last several weeks. It took a seventh-inning rally by the Clippers to overcome the feisty Falcons, 5-3.

Falmouth, which has already qualified for the MIAA state tournament, improved to 11-1 overall with the win. The Falcons fell below the magic .500 mark, dropping to 5-6 with the defeat. Mashpee had dropped a 10-1 decision a day earlier to East Bridgewater High School after a seven-run seventh by the Vikings put that game too far out of reach.

Neither the Clippers nor Falcons could manage to get much done at the plate in the early going. The teams traded zeroes for innings as starting pitchers Phoebe Cutter and Maddie Souza got through those innings unscathed. Falmouth came close to breaking the ice in three of the first four frames, but stranded six runners on base. Mashpee left a pair aboard over the first four.

In the fifth Falmouth’s big bats produced some big hits. Senior catcher Abby Pope nearly knocked a home run over the wall in left-center field, missing by just a foot or two, with a long triple that hit the wall. She scored two batters later, when Meghan Robbins did not miss, leaving the ballpark. The freshman smashed her second round-tripper of the season over the wall in left-center to give Falmouth a 2-0 lead in the top of the frame.

The home team fired back with a single run in the bottom of the fifth to shave the Clippers’ lead in half, and then took the lead in the bottom of the sixth by posting a two spot on the board. In the fifth, Hailey Garcia walked, went to second on a wild pitch, to third on a single by Sydney Puchol and scored on a groundout from Alina Hanna. In the sixth Mashpee tacked on two more to go up a run, 3-2. The Falcons got a piece of luck when Maggie Connolly reached on a dropped third strike to lead off the inning, and then Jayden Bryant singled to put two on base. Souza drove in both with a hit. The makings of a big inning were snuffed out, though, as Molly Bruce came on in relief and got the Clippers out of the inning with limited damage done.

FHS was still trailing, though. For the second time in a week they put together a big late rally to pull out a win. Last week it was a four-run bottom of the sixth against Sandwich to get a win. This time the Clippers plated three.

Abby Pope led the inning off with a single and stole her way to third. Grace Kwon reached on a walk in front of Robbins, who singled in her third RBI of the game to tie the game. Souza struck out the next batter, but then Bruce came up big with a two-run double that broke the tie and gave FHS some insurance.{p style=”margin-bottom: 0in;”}Bruce pitched FHS through the seventh to secure the win. Hanna led the inning off for Mashpee with a single, but then the Falmouth right-hander got the next three outs with a ground out to third, a fly out to left and finally a roller to shortstop.

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