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June 6, 2013

Sandy Creek ends Cooperstown's season

Cring's grand slam gives team hope

(Continued)

Christina Noto reached when Kendra Valley missed a grounder to third. Haggerty was hit by a pitch before Hall worked a walk to load the bases. Hall’s 16-pitch at-bat included 10 foul balls, several of which were just foul down the left field line.

After Duda struck out, Cring hit the curve that didn’t curve on a 1-1 count to bring Cooperstown back.

“I’m really proud of these girls,” Bliss said. “We got down to a really good team, but our team fought until the end. That’s all you can ask for.”

Going into the game, Sandy Creek had given up five runs all season and none of them were earned. But even after Cring’s sixth-inning slam, Claflin said she wasn’t concerned.

“My team makes plays, so I knew we would be fine,” she said.

Fowler said he put his faith into his pitcher.

“She hits her spots well. She can move the ball in. She can move the ball out. Pitchers that can do that well are hard to hit,” he said. “Chelsea is really good at that. Hopefully this is the first of many good games she has on this field.

“We beat a good team today,” he continued. “They have a good pitcher, too, and they have some really good batters. A couple of at-bats that their batters had shows what a good team they are.”

Cring, who went 2-for-3, struck out two, walked one and scattered eight hits for Cooperstown (21-1).

Cring, Haggerty, Duda and Hascup and starting left fielder Noelle Palmatier are among six players set to graduate from a program that won its first Center State Conference division championship and its first Section Three Class C-1 title this season.

“We’re hoping to reload,” Bliss said. “We have a good nucleus coming back. We have two strong pitchers for next year with Ellen Vibbard coming back and Maria Noto moving up. I think we have a good shot at being right back here next year.

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