The wild, wild West?
More like the wild, wild East on Saturday, but it's the way the West was won, as Hills West topped their counterparts from East, 8-0 in League III-IV softball crossover action. The game was a makeup from a rainout on Wednesday.
It was shaping up as a pitcher's duel between West's Alyssa Bitsimis and East's Bria Green. Both throw hard, but on this day on the field at , it was wildness that would be the difference. A sign of things to come happened in the top of the first, when Bitsimis led off the game with a single, and eventually scored on a wild pitch.
The game remained 1-0 till the fourth, when problems between Green and catcher Bridget Serpe resulted in a big inning for the visiting Colts. With two outs, Green issued three straight walks, and two runners scored on wild pitches. All West had to do was let the wildness take its course before striking. That they did when outfielder Melissa Kelly stroked a two-run homer to make it 5-0.
The inning was a culmination of a day of wild pitches/passed balls, and Thunderbird coach Jim Kiernan said it's a product of Green being one of the hardest throwers on Long Island.
"She's wild, and that's a freshman catcher," Kiernan said. "It's very difficult to catch her pitches when she's all over the place...when [Bria] gets tired like that [in the middle innings], that's when she starts throwing the ball all over the place."
On the other side, there were no such problems for Bitsimis. The fifth-year varsity pitcher threw a gem for the Colts, going the distance on a four-hit shutout, striking out 10. The Thunderbirds had no answer for her nasty drop pitch, as their bats were as cold as the windy conditions both teams had to contend with.
"I felt pretty good, a little tired at the end but sucked it up for my team, try to get us our seventh win," Bitsimis said, as the Colts improved to 7-1 on the season.
"She's a competitor," Colts coach Rob Rizzo said of Bitsimis. "She's the type of girl that when in doubt, she'll always bring her 'A' game, just a great girl to have on the team."
Bitsimis had a big day at the plate as well, going 3 for 4 with an RBI single in the seventh. Jessica Jacobs added two hits and an RBI for West.
Serpe had two of East's (2-5) four hits, and Green added a triple. It was a rough day on the mound for her, as she gave up seven runs on six hits, with eight walks and seven Ks.
East resumes league play April 26 vs. North Babylon, while West takes on Newfield the same day.