Skipjack title defense ends at Cecil
Seahawks sweep Chesapeake to take control of state race
NORTH EAST The women’s softball state title picture in the Maryland Junior College Athletic Conference came into focus Wednesday afternoon but the clarity wasn’t particularly helpful for the Skipjacks.
Cecil College swept the Skipjacks, 6-0 and 5-2, to eliminate Chesapeake College from the state softball chase. Cecil (29-12 overall, 13-2 league) and CCBC-Catonsville (17-13, 13-3) are the only two remaining title contenders after Chesapeake (18-15, 11-5) lost for the third time in its last four league games.
"The girls played hard," said Chesapeake head coach Durrie Hayes, whose team shared the state title with both Cecil and Catonsville last year. "They were diving for balls and made a couple of really nice plays. Everyone gave everything they had. Cecil just outplayed us."
Cecil broke a scoreless tie in Game 1 on winning pitcher Hannah Musick’s two-out, two-run single in the fourth. The Seahawks broke the game open with a four-run fifth, including two bases-loaded walks yielded by the normally accurate Kelsi Robinson.
Robinson gave up nine hits and eight walks (two intentional) while striking out seven. Only three of the six runs she allowed were earned.
Musick threw a five-hitter, with only Janean Lowenberger (3-for-3) solving her on a regular basis.
Down 2-0 in the nightcap, the Skipjacks tied the game with a two-run third that included a bases-loaded walk to Tiffeny Ricks and a run-scoring single from Becca English (3-for-4, double). Cecil, however, took command as Marissa Nickerson hit a tie-breaking, two-run homer as part of a three-run fourth.
The Skipjacks had plenty of chances against winning pitcher Alexus McManaway, who gave up nine hits. Robinson and Ashley Muhleman each went 2-for-3 to join English with multiple hits, but Chesapeake left a steady stream of baserunners on base.
Hayes said the doubleheader wasn’t a total loss with the Region XX tournament where Cecil is likely to be the top seed just over the horizon.
"We garnered some information," said Hayes. "We found out how to pitch some of their players and how not to pitch some of their players. And we saw their pitchers, which was helpful."
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