EAST GREENWICH—A number of times this season South Kingstown softball coach Joel Tuoni has mentioned his team has very little margin for error.
Against a team like two-time defending Division II champion East Greenwich that margin is significantly slimmer.
The Rebels (0-5, 0-5 Division II-South) didn’t play poorly Monday but it wasn’t enough as the Avengers (5-1, 5-0 Division II-South) played error-free softball en route to a 9-0 victory.
“It was a great team effort,” EG coach Rob Petrucci said. “Everyone contributed, a lot hits today
moving all the way around [the lineup].”
What made East Greenwich’s defensive performance that much more impressive is the Avs actually had to make plays, rather than some errorless performances when a power pitcher strikes out half the hitters she faces.
After striking out two in the first inning EG senior Lauren Duvall faced 19 batters without recording a ‘K’ before getting a punch out to end the game in the top of the seventh.
The Rebels consistently put the ball in play but Duvall did a nice job of keeping the ball down and allowing her rock-solid defense to make plays.
Sophomore Jackie Passaretti had a tremendous game at third base making a number of highlight reel plays.
“She’s outstanding,” Petrucci said. “The ball goes in the glove and right to first base virtually every time.
“She’s so solid. We’re very fortunate, you look at Hannah Anderson at shortstop, Jackie DeFusco at second base, Kerri Pallister at first [and] Lauren Duvall made a ton of plays on the mound today.”
Offensively the Avengers didn’t break it open all at once but rather slowly distanced themselves one or two runs at a time.
EG picked up one in the bottom of the first when junior Jackie DeFusco scored on a two-out single, while in the second the Avs picked up a pair when junior Kyra Benavent and Passaretti took advantage of a pair of SK errors to stretch the lead to 3-0.
In the bottom of the third the Avengers had a chance to break the game open after loading the bases with just one out but SK starter Taylor Gordon worked her way out of the jam and only gave up one run in the process.
While the EG attack managed to incrementally put runs on the board the Rebels could not get anything going.
From the top of the second to the first two batters of the top of the fourth SK didn’t get a ball out of the infield and only got one runner on base after Duvall walked freshman Tava DeQuattro in the second.
Freshman Rachel Curran finally snapped that streak with two outs in the fourth but was thrown out at third base trying to stretch a double into a triple.
Gordon gave way to Jill Hathaway in the bottom of the fourth but the sophomore pitcher had similar success as EG tacked on two more runs apiece in the fourth and fifth, respectively, before capping off their scoring with one more in the sixth.
The Avengers were back in action Wednesday at 11 a.m. when the hosted LaSalle for a non-league game and will return to D-II play Tuesday at 4 p.m. when they travel to take on Burrillville.