BY KEN MORSE
The Woodland softball team has overcome a few challenges along the way to extending their win streak to 41 straight and improving to 14-0 on the season.
Near perfect pitching, an explosive offense and a determined defense have paved the way to success for the Hawks. Woodland got past Seymour, 6-1, then downed Naugatuck, 7-1.
When it came time to be challenged once again in a matchup with the only other unbeaten team in the NVL, the Hawks took it up a notch.
On April 28, Holy Cross (13-0) and Woodland (11-0) met in Beacon Falls, and the Hawks ran away from the Crusaders, 12-0, in six innings.
Sam Sosnovich belted a two-run homer to cap off an eight-run outburst in the third inning that put the game away. The senior hurler went on to surrender just one hit, four walks and struck 11 in the circle to secure the victory.
Julia Rowley hit a double and a timely single to drive in four runs to help pace the offense. Ella VanAlstyne added a two-run single and Breanna Thurston added two hits and a run scored.
The Hawks have not run out of timely hitters in the lineup. In the crucial win over Seymour, Paige Chiaramonte had two singles and a double to keep the offense moving.
“We have been seeing a lot of the younger players stepping up in big situations and getting the job done,” said Woodland coach Loren Luddy.
Not only has the timely hitting been there, but there’s also a consistent defense with Peyton Filippone (second base) and Kate Lisowski (shortstop) up the middle to backup Sosnovich in the circle.
“Our last two wins against Holy Cross and Oxford showed the improvement we have been seeing throughout our lineup,” said Luddy. “I’m pleased to see the production from the bottom of our lineup the past few games. We need to just keep working hard and stay motivated.”
In an 8-0 win over Oxford on May 1, it was Emma DeGeorge that lit the fuse for the offense, collecting three hits and scoring three runs. Sosnovich did her thing in the pitchers’ circle, scattering four hits and striking out nine.
Woodland put another game in the win column on May 3 with a 21-1 blasting of WCA. VanAlstyne struck out nine and went 4-for-4 at the plate, including a home run and five RBIs.
]Sosnovich unloaded a pair of triples and a home run, knocking in five runs, and Lucia Rubano got the fireworks going, launching a grand slam while adding two more singles.
“We have some teams coming up that are going to give us a battle,” said Luddy. “We have St. Paul and they always give us a competitive game, and of course we have Seymour on senior night.”
Woodland was scheduled for games against St. Paul and Kennedy before returning home for a senior night showdown with Seymour on Friday at 5 o’clock.