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IAC SOFTBALL: RED-HOT FEEKO LEADS TIOGA TO 6-5 WIN OVER OWEGO (2024-05-03)

Valley Sports Report
OWEGO — Tioga took the lead early, but needed to fend off a late Owego rally to pull out a 6-5 win here Friday afternoon in non-league softball action.

Sophomore RaeAnne Feeko continued her torrid hot streak a the plate, going was 4-for-4 with two doubles, one run scored, and two RBI to give 13 hits in her last 13 at-bats this week. She was 5-for-5 against Newark Valley Thursday, and had hits in her last four at-bats Monday against the Cardinals.

The Tigers’ win over Class A  Owego is its second in a week over a bigger school, having beat Class B Windsor Saturday.

After two scoreless innings, Tioga got on the board in the top of the third. Feeko led off with a double, and moved to third on a slap single by freshman Jade Keaty.

With two outs, Feeko scampered home on a passed ball for the game’s first run, and senior Emily Bidwell made it 2-0 with an RBI single.

Tioga ace junior Erin Luther pitched around a walk and a single in the bottom of the third inning, and the Tigers added to their lead in the top of the fourth on a two-out RBI double by Feeko to make it 3-0.

The River Hawks got on the board in the home half of the fourth, but had the bases loaded with one out — via three base on balls — and only scored one run to close the gap to 3-1.

Owego scored another run in the fifth to make it 3-2, and had the bases loaded with one out, but couldn’t score again.

Senior Elizabeth Shaffer and freshman Vanessa Tunnicliff worked walks, sandwiched around a single by sophomore Lily Mezzatesta loaded the bases to start the top of the sixth, and Feeko flared an RBI single to right field to extend the lead to 4-2.

Keaty followed with what would proved to be a key two-RBI single to make it 6-2, but the next three batters were retired, leaving two runners on.

The River Hawks scored three runs to close the gap to 6-5, but the rally lost its steam when a runner was thrown out at third base for the second inning. Following an error, a walk, and a wild pitch that put runners on second, Luther induced a groundball to Feeko at shortstop for the final out.

Tioga had two singles — by Shaffer and Mezzatesta— in the top of the seventh, but also had a runner thrown out at third to thwart the rally.

Luther pitched around a one-out error in the bottom of the seventh to seal the win.

Luther earned the win, allowing five runs — two earned — on five hits, while striking out five, and walking 10 in seven innings.

Mezzatesta had three hits, and one run scored for the Tigers in their 13-hit attack, while Keaty singled twice, scored one run, and had two RBI, and Tunnicliff singled, and scored two runs.

Bidwell singled and scored one run in the win, while Shaffer singled and scored one run, and Luther added a single.

Tioga, now 10-2, hosts Newfield Saturday afternoon.

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IN PHOTO: Tioga’s RaeAnne Feeko. … VSR STOCK PHOTO.

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