North Country Survives Late Inning Scare in 5-4 Win

NEWPORT–Coach Leslie Dunn was forced to shuffle her line-ups last week due to missing personal, and after a loss on Thursday to Middlebury, she found success on Friday as the softball Falcons defeated the Tide of Spaulding 5-4.The player that made the most of her call up was freshman catcher Tori Kinney.In her second game with the big club she she had a key double, two RBI's and scored the eventual game winning run."I am getting some real good experience for next year," said Kinney after the game."She was awesome," Dunn said about her JV catcher. "Tori was doing things offensively and defensively out there and I am so excited for her."The Falcons got ball rolling early, giving Kayla Descheneau a lead to work with in the bottom of the first inning.Anna Bingham reached on an error by Spaulding's second baseman and advanced to third on a wild pitch and a past ball.Kelsea Cutting brought her home with a sac fly to center field and it was 1-0 North Country.In the third Descheneau helper her own cause, doubling in Bingham to up the lead to 2-0.In the fifth three more runs would cross the plate for North Country.Cutting got on base after another Tide error. Descheneau singled, followed Kinney's big double and an RBI single by Hillary Manning and it was now 5-0 NCU.Said Dunn of her team's play in innings 1-6, "We tried to stay focused, taking it one batter at a time. Kayla was hitting her spots and Spaulding could not get anything on it."Neither team scored in the sixth but Kinney did throw out a runner at second in impressive fashion. So with three outs to go and a five run lead, it looked like it was going to be smooth sailing in the seventh.Spaulding had other plans.Emily Chase, Allison Hinton and Steph Cleveland all singled before a single out was made and suddenly things became very serious.After Chase was gunned down at the plate by Anna Ghelli, Cleveland and Hinton, along with Jaime Marsh and Sam Hammerstrom, all crossed the plate to make it a one run game.But with two down Descheneau got Brenna Bedard to ground the ball back to the circle and threw her out at first to seal the win."They started to hit the ball," Dunn said simply about what happened in the seventh. "Kayla may have been getting tired as she has pitched the last five games for us, but she is a pro and is truly our senior leader out there. But I didn't care if it was a five run or a one run win, winning was all that mattered."The 5-8 Falcons will try to keep their winning ways going this Tuesday. Before action gets underway the team will honor their seniors with a pre-game ceremony followed by the girls' final home game of the season against Mount Mansfield.Game time is 4:30.