Frontier shuts down Amherst
Tim Myslinski remembers coaching against Amherst teams when Jodi Battaglia was a star player for the Tigers. Wednesday, his Frontier team triumphed, 7-1, over an Amherst team coached by Battaglia, who has replaced her mother, Janet, as head girls lacrosse coach.
"It makes me feel old," Myslinski said. "I actually watched her [Jodi] play when I just started coaching. Her mom is a legend. It was kind of cool."
Frontier is off to a 2-0 start with wins over Lake Shore and Amherst. "Those are two nice wins but we'll find out how good we are when we play Lancaster, Orchard Park and Clarence," Myslinski said.
The Falcons shut down Amherst, causing 14 turnovers and making seven interceptions. They allowed only five shots on net.
Senior captain Ashley Brandt-Hunter led Frontier with three goals and an assist from her attack position. Erin Wilcox had a goal and an assist.
"Wilcox was all over the field on defense," Myslinski said. "The girls as a unit played fantastic. We like to say it's a privilege to play defense for the Falcons and the girls just love it. To hold a good team like Amherst to one goal is something."
Quakers rolling early
The word around ECIC I baseball usually is: Get Orchard Park early because the Quakers usually get tougher to beat as the season rolls along.
Well, a veteran-laden OP team is off to a 2-0 start in the division after Wednesday's 7-4 victory over Frontier. More bad new for ECIC I opponents: The Quakers were led by a pair of sophomores.
Sophomore first baseman Johnny McCarthy hit a two-run triple off the center field fence to give the Quakers the lead. Sophomore shortstop Bubba Hollins had three doubles, driving in two runs. Jordan Iannarelli had three singles and an RBI for OP.
Jim Fitzgerald gave up a two-run homer in the first inning to Blair Lakso of the Falcons and fell behind 4-0. Fitzgerald shut down Frontier after that while his teammates played catch-up.
Despite the heroics of McCarthy and Hollins, the Quakers are really a veteran team.
"Our top four pitchers are back, my second baseman, my first baseman, my catcher and third baseman are all back so we have high hopes," said OP coach Jim Gibson. "Frontier will be a good team. Our division is always good. There's never a weak team."
Albion has the Knaak
Albion won the Niagara-Orleans League softball championship last season with five sophomores in the lineup. They're all back as juniors but the Purple Eagles' ace is senior pitcher Jennifer Knaak, who has been a five-year starter. Knaak pitched a three-hitter, striking out nine, Wednesday in an 8-3 triumph over Wilson.
"Jenn is only in her second year as a pitcher," said Albion coach Gary Parisi. "She was All-Western New York [large school] honorable mention and all-league last year. She's hitting over .600 right now. Third base is where she probably is going to play in college. She's headed to St. John Fisher."
After Wilson rallied to tie the game, 3-3, with two runs in the fifth, Albion scored twice in its turn at bat, then broke it open with three in the sixth.