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Townsend Harris snaps Bryant winning streak

It was one of those wild PSAL softball games at Queens College Friday between Queens I rivals Townsend Harris and Bryant, the type of game where the lead changed hands at the blink of an eye and both coaches were left scratching their heads, searching for the closest bottle of aspirin.

When the dust cleared, it was the Hawks, who were victorious 13-9, snapping the Owls’ two-year 22-game division winning streak.

“It was crazy, but we usually have those type of games against Bryant,” said Townsend Harris coach Larry Ceraulo. “They hit well, we hit well. We should have put the game away early, but that’s what happens when it’s a crazy game.”

Almost lost in the middle of the ugliness of eight errors and six wild pitches, one play stood out as the turning point for Townsend Harris.

After scoring five runs in the first two innings to take a 5-1 lead, the Hawks saw their lead evaporate thanks to Bryant’s four-run third inning. It could have been worse if not for a spectacular inning-ending catch by freshman catcher Patty Pabon.

Nathalie Laureano’s tip appeared destined to land foul, but Pabon leaped out of her crouching position and made a diving stab just shy of the Townsend Harris dugout.

“I don’t give up, I figured I’d at least try for it,” said Pabon, a Bronx resident. “But it’s a team effort. If it wasn’t for the other two outs, my catch would have meant nothing.”

Pabon also excelled at the plate for Townsend Harris (11-6, 10-2), which wrapped up second place in the division and the playoff berth that comes with it. She went 3-for-4 with three RBIs, reaching on an error in her first bat. Oh yeah, and she has tendinitis in her left shoulder.

“I don’t know how much longer I’m going to play this game, so I’m just going to keep diving and throwing,” Pabon said. “To me softball is second to life.”

Trailing 7-5 in the bottom of the fourth Pabon tied the game with a two-run infield single. Alexandra Silva, Megan Davidow and Angela Muscolino followed with three consecutive singles to give the Hawks a 9-7 lead. Townsend Harris added one more run to take a 10-7 lead.

Bryant (20-3, 8-1) wasn’t through though, scoring two runs on back-to-back RBI-singles by Allison Stupakevich and Amanda Acevedo in the top of the fifth to cut their deficit to one, 10-9.

Acevedo, a sophomore hurler, led off the bottom of the fifth inning by walking Marel Temiz, who was nailed by Stephanie Cutignola attempting to steal second. Acevedo walked nine, but more importantly led off by walking the leadoff batter in five of the six innings.

Kristina Casper followed with a walk. Sophomore Daphne Perez, who has been smoking the ball since returning from injury, tripled to left field and scored on a throwing error. Perez also tripled to left and scored on Silva’s groundout to second to put the Hawks ahead, 13-9.

“They just picked up on our mistakes,” said Bryant coach Wally Hausdorf. “[Acevedo] is a sophomore and she had a rough day, but I’m still happy with her. Hopefully next year she will have enough smoke to get past some of their big hitters.”

Forest Hills 11, Grover Cleveland 9. Carly Everhart and Maryianne Niyazov each belted two-run home runs for the Rangers (12-5, 7-3 Queens I).

Francis Lewis 15, Jamaica 2. Elizabeth Pinedo went 4-for-4 with three RBIs and Elizabeth Bloch was 3-for-5 for the Patriots (13-4, 10-1 Queens III).

Queens Vocational 20, Long Island City 0. Sushel Polanco and Roselia Perez combined for 12 RBIs and Janette Taverez pitched five no-hit innings for the Tigers (5-5, 5-5 Queens I).

Flushing 13, Newtown 9. Wing Har and Gissell Spencer combined for seven walks and six runs scored for Flushing (9-6, 5-6 Queens I).

Cardozo 20, Jamaica 0. Lindsay Rhoades tossed a no-hitter, striking out 14 and Erica Choit was 5-for-5 for the Judges (13-2, 10-2 Queens III).

Van Buren 12, Bowne 5. Maria Scalisi (4-for-5) and Cindy Nappi (3-for-5) led the VeeBees (9-9, 7-5 Queens III).

Francis Lewis 10, Bayside 9. Alex Anagnostos was 3-for-4 with two runs scored and one RBI and Victoria Gardner (2-for-3, two RBIs) led the Patriots.

Bryant 11, LIC 1. Jackie Rodriguez and Jessica Santiago both went yard for the Owls.

Reach Associate Sports Editor Dylan Butler by e-mail at Timesledgr@aol.com or call 229-0300, Ext. 143.

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