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High schools: Belmont softball picks up win over Hopkinton in 8 innings

Monitor staff
Published: 5/15/2019 10:36:40 PM

CONTOOCOOK – It made sense that seven innings wasn’t enough to decide Wednesday’s game between a pair of title contenders in Division III. With both the Hopkinton and Belmont softball teams trading blows and using clutch hits to swap leads, the two sides needed one more frame to sort everything out.

Julianna Estremera drove in the game-winning run with two outs in the eighth and Raven Gates made sure the lead stuck, adding on with an RBI single as Belmont picked up a key extra-innings win on the road against Hopkinton, 8-7.

Both programs entered the afternoon at the top of the standings and as two of the five teams inside D-III with double-digit wins to this point in season.

So how much stock does a coach put into a victory like that?

“An awful lot,” Belmont coach Bill Clary said after the Raiders moved to 11-1. “We don’t get better playing teams that are 1-10. We get better playing the teams that are 8-2. And I think even though this was a struggle for us, we got better playing today and I like having these games. It makes us a better team.”

The Raiders had their chances to avoid extra innings after plating four runs in the fifth for a 5-1 lead, but coughed up that advantage by allowing the Hawks (10-3) to score one in the fifth and four in the sixth.

Trailing 6-5 with two outs in the seventh, Belmont freshman Savannah Perkins kept the game alive with a single to center field that scored Gates, who slid just underneath the tag of Hopkinton catcher Katie Meserve to tie the game.

After starter Morgan Hall shut down the Hawks in their half of the seventh, Belmont again came out in attack mode for the eighth.

Kara Stephens drew a leadoff walk and moved up all the way up to third base on a bunt and a Hopkinton throwing error. The Hawks nearly escaped the inning when Estremera ripped a ball to the left side of the infield, but Hopkinton couldn’t field it cleanly and Belmont took a lead it wouldn’t relinquish this time.

“As we go through the (batting) order in all of our games, our girls can adjust in the game,” Clary said. “Their second and third at-bats, they really adjust to the speed of the pitch, location. So we hit a lot better as the game went on, too.

“One through nine, our order is pretty strong and we get the bat on the ball,” Clary said. “When you do that, things happen, whether it’s an error, off the glove or a deflection, that helps us.”

The Hawks, though, didn’t go down without a fight.

Megan Blanchette (3-for-3) lined a double down the left-field line and came around to score on a throwing error to make it, 8-7, but Belmont dug deep for the final out to strand the tying runner at second base.

Along with Blanchette, Hopkinton also received some solid showings from freshman Maddy Follansbees (3-for-5, 2 RBI) and sophomore Maurgan McGrath, who had three hits from the No. 9 spot in the lineup in her first varsity start.

“I thought we played loose today, which was good,” Hopkinton coach Dan Meserve said. “We might have lost our focus a few times, but we didn’t give up, we didn’t back down and we battled. Even up to the last inning, we had the tying runner on second base. It was a good game. They’re a good team.”

(Jay McAree can be reached at 369-3371, or on Twitter @JayMcAree.)


Concord 2, Manchester Memorial 1

Key players: Concord – Abby Rochette (7 IP, W, 13 K, 1 BB, 4 H), Carly Torrance (RBI single), Abby Corbett (hit, threw runner out stealing), Anita DiBuono (hit), Anna Brock (hit), Autumn Nudd (run), Alyssa Fallon (run) Manchester Memorial – Emersyn Provencher (6 IP, 4 H, 2 K, 1 ER)

Highlights: Concord scored one in the first inning when Nudd came in on a wild pitch with pitcher’s obstruction on the play at the plate. Memorial answered with a run in the second before the Tide scored the winning run in the fourth on a leadoff hit by Corbett, a sacrifice bunt by Elise O’Neil and Torrance’s RBI single.

Coach’s quote: “Abby dominated again in the circle. We’d like to give her a few more runs to work with, but we were hitting it hard, just right at people. Credit Memorial with playing its outfield deep and in the right spots.” – Concord assistant coach Sandy Smith

Records: Concord 11-3; Manchester Memorial 2-11

Merrimack Valley 20, Kingswood 6 (5 inn.)

Key players: Merrimack Valley – Molly McLaughlin (5 hits), Lauren McLaughlin (5 hits), Emma Steenbeke (3-run HR), Miah Boucher (3 hits), Sadie Barton (2 IP, 3 K, 0 ER), Haleigh Boutwell (3 IP, 5 K, 1 ER)

Highlights: The Pride built a 16-1 lead in the top of the second on its way to the win in Wolfeboro.

Coach’s quote: “We need to have a good practice Thursday in preparation for John Stark on Friday.” – MV’s Sam York

Records: Merrimack Valley 11-3; Kingswood 0-12

Bow 2, Sanborn 1

Highlights: Maddie McSweeney drove in two runs in the bottom of the sixth and Lauryn Colby pitched a complete game to lead the Falcons to the home win. Annika Geiben-Lynn and Katelin Howe both singled to lead off the sixth and eventually came home on McSweeney’s shot to left field.

Records: Bow 4-6; Sanborn 1-9

Bishop Brady 6, Gilford 2

Key players: Bishop Brady – Abby Santis (100th career hit, RBI), Ashley Brust (2 hits, run), Halle Laramie (7 IP, W, 7 K, 4 BB, 5 H, 1 ER; RBI, hit, run), Isabella Rivera (RBI, hit, run), Hannah Hicks (hit, run)

Highlights: It was a rough start for Brady and Santis, who was hit by a rocket shot off a Gilford bat in the first inning as the Golden Eagles took a 2-0 lead. But Santis stayed in the game and collected her milestone hit in Brady’s six-run second inning.

Coach’s quote: “This game was all about Abby Santis. It was a great to see her teammates storm the field to celebrate her 100th hit of her high school career.” – Bishop Brady’s Freddy Rivera

Records: Bishop Brady 10-2; Gilford 5-6


Coe-Brown 7, Pembroke 5

Key players: Coe-Brown – Lucas McCusker (7 IP, W, 12 K), Jacob Rich (2 RBI), Hunter DeCota (2 RBI); Pembroke – Chris Daniels (hit, 2 RBI), Jeff Wagner (double), Cal Michael (2 IP, 0 ER)

Highlights: Pembroke jumped out to a 3-0 lead in Northwood, but the Bears got one back in the bottom of the first, took a 4-3 lead after two and pushed that 7-3 after four innings.

Records: Coe-Brown 9-4; Pembroke 5-7

Merrimack Valley 8, Kingswood 2

Key players: MV – Kyle Dube (7 IP, W, 6 K), Caleb Heath (2-for-4, RBI), Dillon McCarthy (1-3, RBI), Matt Ostrowski (2-for-4)

Highlights: MV got back to .500 with the win in Wolfeboro and Pride coach Sean Wheeler earned his 150th NHIAA career win.

Coach’s quote: “Kyle Dube was the key for us today. He was ahead of the count all day. We still need to clean up some things on the defensive side of the ball.” – MV’s Wheeler

Records: MV 6-6; Kingswood 1-9

John Stark 19, Kearsarge 4

Key players: John Stark – Nate Isabelle (3 IP, W; 3-for-3, run), Brett Patnode (3-for-4, 3 runs, 2 RBI, double, SB), Rian Queen (2-for-2, 4 RBI, SB), Carter Pike (2-for-3, 2 RBI, SB)

Highlights: The Generals scored in each of the first four innings, highlighted by an 11-run fourth.

Coach’s quote: “We had a good breakout day today and I was happy all 15 players got a chance to bat and play the field.” – Stark’s Dennis Pelletier

Records: John Stark 12-0; Kearsarge 1-11

Bow 18, Sanborn 5 (5 inn.)

Key players: Bow – Tom Sampo (2-for-3, triple, 2 RBI, 2 runs), Riley Elliott (3 hits, 3 RBI, 2 runs), Nick Kiah (W), Ben Harris (2 hits, 2 RBI), Connor Blandini (2 hits, 2 RBI), Brian Carter (hit, run)

Highlights: After Sanborn took a 4-0 lead in the top of the third, Bow scored nine runs in the bottom half of the inning and nine more in the fourth to run away with the win at home.

Records: Bow10-1; Sanborn 3-7

Winnisquam 10, Berlin 0 (5 inn.)

Key players: Winnisquam – Michael Allard (5 IP, 5 K, 3 H, 0 ER; hit, RBI, 3 walks, 2 SB), Andrew McKinnon (2-for-3, 2 RBI, 2 SB, 2 runs), Evan Judkins (2-for-4, RBI), Sam Wood (RBI double)

Highlights: Winnisquam scored in every inning, breaking the game open with four in the fourth.

Coach’s quote: “Good, solid win. We ran the bases very well (12 steals) and kept the pressure on all game. (Allard) pitched ahead much of the game and continued getting on base at the plate.” – Winnisquam’s Fred Caruso

Records: Winnisquam 5-6; Berlin 3-9

Belmont 6, Hopkinton 1

Key players: Belmont – Griffin Embree (7 IP, W, 7 K, 0 BB, 4 H; 2-for-4, double, RBI, run), Cam Magerer 2-for-3, walk, run), Nate Sottak (2-for-4, run), Austin Didsbury (hit, RBI, run); Hopkinton – Caleb Yianakopolos (2 hits, RBI)

Highlights: Belmont got off to another quick start, scoring six runs on five hits and a walk in the first.

Coach’s quote: “A great team win against the top team in Division III. We respect the heck out of those guys and it’s nice to see our team play close to a complete game.” – Belmont’s Matt LeBlanc

Records: Belmont 10-2; Hopkinton 11-2

Gilford 2, Bishop Brady 0

Key players: Gilford – Adrian Siravo (7 IP, 15 K, 0 ER, 3 H); Bishop Brady – Connor Treybig (7 IP, 2 ER, 9 K, 4 H), Tom Daly (hit), Nick Grimbilas (hit), Alex Andrews (hit)

Highlights: Siravo and Treybig were locked in a scoreless pitching duel before Gilford got a leadoff triple in the top of the fifth and took a 1-0 lead. The hard-throwing Siravo held Brady to three hits.

Coach’s quote: “Siravo was on today so it was tough to get any offense going. Connor gave us another great outing on the mound. We just have to find a way to generate more offense to give us a chance to win.” – Brady’s Skip Foy

Records: Gilford 10-2; Bishop Brady 7-5

Boys’ Volleyball

John Stark 3, Farmington 0

Key players: John Stark – Chris Metcalf (6 aces, 4 kills), Jackson Smith (15 assists), Owen Payeur (6 kills, 3 blocks)

Coach’s quote: “We continue to work hard and compete. It felt good to walk away on the positive side tonight.” – Stark’s Kristen Hrubowchak

Records: John Stark 2-9; Farmington 0-8

Boys’ Lacrosse

Coe-Brown 10, Spaulding 2

Key players: Coe-Brown – Ryan Whitcher (2 G, A), Jack Cinquegrano (3 G, 2 A), Jacob Radwan (2 G), Aaron Bono (G, A), Will Sawyer (2 G, A), Wells Lambert (A), Cole Hodgdon (A), Ryan Nester (A)

Coach’s quote: “I am very proud of the guys for continuing to find ways to get the job done, anchored by strong defense and taking advantage of available opportunities. It’ll have to continue down the home stretch if we want to meet our goals. We are looking forward to it.” – Coe-Brown’s Tony DePalma

Records: Coe-Brown 6-5; Spaulding0-10

Girls’ Lacrosse

Pembroke 19, Trinity 4

Key players: Pembroke – Cierra Hill (8 G, A), Ali Corriveau (2 G), Britney Hill (2 G, 3 A; Kerra Vallee (3 G), Savannah Wallace (2 G), Lindsay Hawkins (G), Kaylie LeBlanc (G)

Coach’s quote: “Our girls came ready to play today and put the pressure on Trinity. Trinity’s goalkeeper had an impressive 20 saves, making our girls really have to work for each of their goals.” – Pembroke’s Kayla Granoff

Records: Pembroke 6-5; Trinity 1-11

Merrimack Valley 11, Spaulding 5

Key players: Merrimack Valley – Alexa Prewitt (4 G, 3 A), Kallie Fisher (2 G, A, 6 draw controls), Kaylee Magoon (2 G), Reilly Swislosky (2 G, A), Anya Dinger (G). Spaulding — Morgan White (3 G), Zoey Cormican (13 saves)

Highlights: The Pride came out determined for a victory and led 5-2 at the half. MV used quality teamwork and lacrosse IQ worked to earn the win.

Coach’s quote: “Great game and outcome for the MVHS girls’ lacrosse team as we continue to learn and grow with every moment on the field. Teamwork was definitely on display tonight.” – Merrimack Valley’s Katherine Stearns

Records: Merrimack Valley 4-8; Spaulding 3-8

Kearsarge 16, Bishop Brady 3

Key players: Bishop Brady – Molly Levesque, Lauren Beitler, Maddy Rhynhart, Kate Shoemaker

Highlights: The Green Giants were coming off a 14-4 victory over Trinity on Tuesday at Saint Anselm College, but the Cougars ran away with the win on Wednesday.

Coach’s quote: “Kearsarge is a formidable opponent, and we knew that going in. e were hopeful because we took the first possession and scored the first goal right away. The nice thing is Kearsarge played a fast game with such skill and sportsmanship. Our girls hung together and played to the best of their ability, never giving an inch, but having opportunities to score just miss the mark left us short on the board.” – Bishop Brady’s Rose Marie Marinace

Records: Kearsarge 9-3; Bishop Brady 3-8

Girls’ Tennis

Bow 9, Souhegan 0

Key players: Bow – Olivia Parzick (8-0 win at No. 1 singles), Emma Conley (8-6 win at No. 2), Lauren Goyette (8-6 win at No. 3), Miah Munro (8-3 win at No. 4), Alyssa Harpring (8-3 win at No. 5), Isabell Dolcino (8-3 win at No. 6)

Highlights: The Falcons completed the sweep in doubles as the teams of Parzick and Harpring (9-7 at No. 1), Goyette and Munro (8-4 at No. 2) and Dolcino and Madeline Lessard (8-2 at No. 3) all won.

Coach’s quote: “The matches were much closer than the final score indicates. Souhegan had some very strong players, but the Bow girls stayed strong, worked hard and were able to come away with the win.” – Bow’s Jonsey Rainville

Records: Bow 14-0; Souhegan7-4

Goffstown 9, Pembroke 0

Key players: Pembroke Academy – Keelin Cripps

Highlights: Cripps fought hard at No. 6 singles and No. 3 doubles but lost both matches, 8-5.

Coach’s quote: “Goffstown is a strong team and deserved the win.” – Pembroke’s David Goulet

Records: Goffstown 8-5; Pembroke 2-10

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