Lady Rangers Take Off, Best Spartans 16-7

ORLEANS–After falling 3-1 to Danville on Thursday, the Lake Region softball team picked up their first victory of the season with a 16-7 win over Winooski."Certainly the four games we lost were winnable, and I told the girls that we could easily go on another run like we did last year and win ten of our last eleven. Today we got our running game going, we created some stuff, and that led to some good things.With a grin on her face Alyssa Royer added, "We are definitely excited. The team is all smiley, smiley."After allowing the Spartans' lead-off hitter Fallon Pereault to reach base, the Rangers cruised through the rest of the first, and headed into the bottom of the inning tied 0-0.In the LR half of the first Corrina Cota got the Rangers going with a double. Haley Kennedy moved her over with a sac bunt, and after after Stephanie Merchant walked, there were runners on 1st and 3rd with one out.Both Merchant and and Cota would eventually come around to score, and the Rangers were up 2-0 early.In the second, Winooski's Miranda Rouille and Brittany Provost came around to score, tying the game at two.In the top of the third, the Spartans added another three runs on a walk, a triple, a double and a single.Down 5-2 in the bottom of the third, Lake Region put Merchant and Sarah Burnham, on base with a double and a walk, but two quick outs later it looked like the Ranger rally would come to a halt.Wrong.Just like so many times last year, Tinker's team put forth a two out scoring spree, scoring five runs to take a 7-5 lead.After Merchant and Burnham scored, the Rangers' 7th-9th hitters all crossed the plate, and the team never looked back.In the fourth Callie Cashin's two out walk became the team's eighth run, with runs number nine and ten coming in the fifth.The sixth inning was a comical and productive one for the home team as they plated another six runs, but had a few stumbles along the base path.Tiffany Little was the first person to fall victim the treacherous conditions in between second third.After receiving extensive "coaching" from members of her team while at first, Little made it to second with ease. However, her new form failed her as she headed to third on Cota's single.It looked like it was going to be a close play at third, and as she went to slide in her feet got a tangled and down she went. She was able to regroup, and eventually came home to score.Corrina was the next one down as she just plain fell in roughly the same spot as her teammate.Both girls took their miscues with smiles, and Tinker saw the positives in the moments."We have been tight, and I think getting the girls to laugh, getting them loose helped just as much as getting ten hits. We started out 0-4 and there was not a lot to laugh about, so hopefully that will carry us into next week."Spills aside, Tinker was also impressed with the play of his second baseman Alyssa Royer.Though quiet on the score sheet, Royer was impressive in the field, being the pivot man in the first double-play of the season for the Rangers as well as having the presence of mind to back up Merchant on a tough play at first."She just did the same thing she has done all year. She is playing solid second base, covering first when she needs to, and offensively she is putting the bat on the ball. Even her outs are hard hit."Said Royer of the double-play on Saturday, "It felt good. It was the first of the season and I am just glad we could do it."Michelle Thibeault went the distance to earn the win for the now 1-4 Lake Region, and she will called upon again to take the circle tomorrow when the team travels to Peoples Academy for their next game