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Valley Sports Report
WAVERLY - Waverly came into Monday's clash with Newark Valley looking to extend its lead atop IAC Division 3. Paced by Wendi Hammond's arm and bat, as well as Kari VanAllen's stick, the Wolverines would do just that, posting a 15-0 victory in six innings.

The Cardinals hung tough in the game's early innings, trailing just 2-0 on runs driven in by Hammond.

"We were talking about how big the game was," said Waverly head coach Brian Wendela. "We weren't excited about being out on spring break and getting back in school. Monday's are usually difficult for us but the girls responded. I kept on challenging them throughout the game and they knew the magnitude of the game and where were at and where we're sitting."

"I think they answered toward the end of the game, starting with Wendi Hammond and Kari VanAllen especially today."

From the circle, Hammond struck out 12 batters, and allowed just two hits while walking one. At the plate, she went 4-for-4 with three home runs and seven RBI. She also scored three runs. Meanwhile, VanAllen was also 4-for-4 at the dish with three run and three RBI.

"We didn't help the cause when we had six errors," said NV head coach Jason Monte. "We should have been out of the fifth inning with one run and it would have been 6-0 and we gave up five or six and it kind of snowballed after there. You can't shoot yourself in the foot against a team like this, not with pitcher like that where your runs are going to be pretty limited.

"Three home runs too. They're a solid team too, but she's a rare player. We talked about it coming in here, to just focus on making contact and not worry about what she's doing, and I don't think that played well into our hands. Once they saw her firing in there, because she picked up a lot of velocity from last year too. She has good control and throws some good pitches, but she throws a lot harder this year."

Hammond would give Waverly, which debuted in Monday's initial Class B state rankings at No. 2, all the scoring it would need in her first at-bat. She launched her first homer over the left field fence to lead off the bottom of the first inning.

After driving home Kari VanAllen with a single to left in the second to make it 2-0, she would smack two-run shots in the fourth and fifth, scoring VanAllen and Sydney Meyers, respectively.

The Wolverines' second run came following a VanAllen single and an error off the bat of Meyers.

NV pitcher Cassidy Hoffmier retired Waverly in order in the third, but a walk to Morgan Lee led to a VanAllen RBI single in the fourth and Hammond's homer pushed the lead to 5-0. The Cardinals avoided possible further damage when catcher Marissa Berghorn threw to second baseman April Simmons to catch a runner stealing.

"Credit to Newark Valley," Wendela said. "I think a lot of it is the pitching we've been seeing is a lot of lefties, lefty arms lately, so this is the first mid-speed right-handed pitcher that we've seen in a while. It think it played with us a little bit. She did a good job mixing them up, (keeping us) off-guard. Newark Valley's got athletes. They caught us sleeping a little bit and it took us a couple innings to wake up and have an answer for them."

Hammond responded by striking out the side in the fifth and the home team made it 6-0 when Riley Hall scored on Lee's groundout. With two away, Alyssa Sindoni doubled to score Paige Lewis, who had reached on a single, then Sindoni scored on a VanAllen triple. VanAllen would score on an error off the bat of Meyers, then Hammond made it 11-0 with her third round-trip shot of the game.

In the sixth, Hall doubled, Morgan Adams had an RBI single, Sabrina Pierce and Morgan Lee walked, and VanAllen singled home a run to make it 13-0. Pierce would score after Meyers was hit by a pitch and Hammond would walk to bring Morgan Lee home to end the game.

Newark Valley would put Hoffmier in scoring position in the second inning on a double, but a pair of strikeouts and a groundout ended the threat.

Kimi Mertson walked to start the third, but a pop-up to catcher Hall and two more strikeouts left Mertson stranded at second.

Allie Wandell would single with one down in the sixth, would steal second and move to third on April Simmons' sacrifice bunt, but could advance no further.

Hall also had multiple hit for the Wolverines, going 2-for-3 with two runs. Lewis, Adams and Sindoni contributed one hit apiece. Lewis, Adams, Morgan Lee, Pierce, Sindoni, Megan Lee and Meyers scored one run each. Adams, Morgan Lee, Sindoni and Meyers had one RBI each.

The win improves Waverly's record to 8-0 in division play, 2 1/2 games ahead of Notre Dame (5-2) while NV (5-3) slips to three back in the division.


IN PHOTO 1: Waverly's Hali Jenner (left). ... PHOTOS BY TIM TAYLOR.

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