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Bears roll in softball, 17-2 over Shepaug.

POSTED April 24, 2014
BY Timothy W. Gaffney
Twitter: @TimothyGaffney

THOMASTON: It didn’t take Gene Torrence too long to get a few of his softball teams stars minds off the hardwood and onto the diamond when the spring softball season started, two days after the Golden Bears brought home a State Championship.

“They won the title on Saturday and practice started on Monday,” Torrence said. “I gave them that first Monday off so they could clear their minds and get set for the next season.”

Seven members of the Class S champs now make up most of the 11 person team that has started the year strongly, with only one loss in seven tries so far this spring.

Most would beg to differ that on Wednesday, with a stiff 30-35 mile an hour wind blowing in towards the softball field, with that statement of spring but because the calendar says so, we’ll go with it.

After falling behind 2-0 early to Shepaug entering the bottom of the third, the Bears exploded for 17 runs over the  next three at bats and walked away with a mercy rule 17-2 decision.

The Spartans came in 3-2 and were the aggressors early, pushing across a first inning run on a Maribeth Seeger walk, a grounder that moved her up to second and an RBI single by Giana Johnson.

Shepaug would add another in their half of the third on a long triple by Mairead Rosa, who would be thrown out at the plate after trying for the round tripper but the 2-0 lead was a bit of a surprise and a wake-up call for the home team.

Bears starting and winning pitcher, Morgan Sanson, walked three in the frame but her battery mate, one of those hoopsters, Nicole Schaefer, would gun down consecutive runners who attempted to steal second.

It was after the top of the third that the manager brought his team together and encouraged them to lose the slumber they appeared to be in.

In fairness, they may have been frozen or blinded by the dust swirling around but either way, they got the coaches message and responded quickly in the bottom of the third when they would send 10 to the plate, scoring five times.

Gabby Hurlbert would drive in the first run on a fielder’s choice and Abby Hurlbert would plate another with the first of two loud doubles that the senior shortstop would string together over the next two innings.

Sanson would pitch in at the plate as well with a 3 for 3 night, two runs scored and three driven in.

A nine-run bottom of the fourth gave hope to those on hand, along with the players that perhaps an entire seven inning game would not be needed to decide this outcome and with a three run top of the fifth, their wishes were granted.

The Berkshire League race seems to be shaping up and it all starts with Northwestern, a team that has run the table so far at 6-0, including a 10-6 win over the Bears.

Lewis Mills sits at 6-1, their only loss coming at the hands of Thomaston, a surprising 14-0 loss in Thomaston.

Nonnewaug is right on the leaders heals at 4-1, their one loss also courtesy of the Golden Bears 6-2 in Woodbury.

The Bears travel to meet both the Highlanders and Mills the second week of May, a week that may go a long way towards deciding the 2014 BL race.

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