The Martha’s Vineyard Women’s Softball League playoffs started with a shocker on Thursday night at the high school varsity field. The Rug Sox, who struggled through a 2-10 regular season, put everything together – pitching, defense, timely hitting, you name it – and beat the top-seeded 10-2 Creamers by a healthy 12-4 margin.
Sox pitcher Julie Pringle had herself a night. She struck out five Creamers and helped her cause at the plate by hitting four singles, knocking in a run, and scoring two more.
Katherine Clark powered the Sox lineup from the top of the order with a single, double, triple, three RBIs and two runs scored and Emily Mello hit 3 for 4 in the third spot.
Jen Ingraham snagged the web gem of the evening by making an outstanding running catch in right-center during the fifth inning.
After a scoreless first inning, the teams traded runs in the second. Michelle Cacchiotti singled to score Morgen Schroeder for the Sox and Kelly Oaks smacked a triple to bring in Kelly Bowse for the Creamers.
The Rug Sox scored three runs in the third and six in the sixth to take command.
Nicole Cancellare drew a lead-off walk in the third, Jen Ingraham hit an RBI-single and Jess Sonia batted in two runs to make it 4-1. Anne Sullivan tripled to open the Creamers fifth and scored on a Kelly Bowse sac fly to get a run back but the Sox poured it on in their next at bat. Lizzie Andrews led off with a walk and then came the flood: six singles on six hits and an error to put the Sox up, 12-2. Katherine Clark, Emily Mello, Summer Cardoza, Collette Jordan and Julie Pringle all singled and scored, Jen Ingraham picked up her second RBI and Lizzie Andrews plated another run.
The Creamers came to bat in the seventh with one last chance to prevent the upset. Sam Burns and Lindsay Russo both singled and Sarah Strem, pinch running for Burns, came in to score. With two outs, Anne Sullivan put the ball in play. Lindsay Russo ran for home and scored on a close play at the plate. As Sullivan headed for second, Rug Sox first baseman Marisa Estrella called out to catcher Collette Jordan. In quick succession, Jordan threw to Estrella and Marisa fired to Morgen Schroeder, who tagged out the sliding Sullivan in a cloud of dust for the final out.
With the win, the Rug Sox move into the winners-bracket of the double-elimination tournament and the Creamers face a must win against the loser of Tuesday’s game (6:15 pm at MVRHS) between the No. 2 Snaps and No. 3 Mama’s Girls.