By GREG KLEIN • Special to www.AllOTSEGO.com
Marley Lippitt struck out 14 batters, walking none and giving up three hits, as top seeded Cooperstown advanced to the Section III Class C quarterfinals with a 5-0 opening-round win over No. 16 Weedsport on Monday, June 7, at Cooperstown Central School.
Cooperstown had trouble with Weedsport pitcher Christine Jackson early, but began to figure out her motion in the middle innings.
“It wasn’t so much the pitcher’s pitches as she had this extra motion that was throwing off our timing,” Cooperstown softball coach Buddy Lippitt said. “We were not being careful enough at the pitches we were swinging at and we were helping her out. After a couple of innings, we settled in and began laying off bad pitches.”
As a No. 1 seed in softball, Cooperstown got upset by a 16 seed twice in the past six years, in 2015 and 2017. However, Lippitt said he and assistant coach Lynn Casale spoke to the team after the first couple of innings and told them they could play much better.
“Lynn was yelling at them to wake up and I just told them we were capable of playing much better,” Lippitt said. “I said, ‘They are the 16 seed and they just had a two hour bus ride. We are the No. 1 seed, so let’s play like we have been playing all year.’ I think we calmed down after that and started swinging at better pitches.
“That’s what I love about this team,” Lippitt continued. “Whenever one of us is down, someone else is there to pick us up.”
Jeana Geertgens scored a solo run in the third inning to get Cooperstown on the scoreboard. She doubled, took third on a wild pitch and scored on Dani Seamon’s RBI single to center field.
Cooperstown scored two unearned runs in the fourth inning, with Abby Miller walking and scoring on a fielder’s choice that led to a throwing error. Sophia Hotaling reached on that play and then came around to score on a stolen base and a throwing error to give Cooperstown a 3-0 lead.
Hotaling and Emily Amore scored in the sixth inning after a series of fielder’s choices, an RBI single by Katie Crippen and an error at first base to make it a 5-0 game.
Cooperstown will host the winner of Monday’s Waterville at Oriskany game at 5 p.m. Tuesday, June 8, in the quarterfinals.