Hampden – Monday night Rivertown Eye Care (Hampden) was looking to put a stamp on a perfect season as they entered the Majors little league softball championship game against Allenfarm Fence Company (Hermon). Unfortunately what they ran into was the best pitcher in the league, as Lexi MacManus turned in a gem of a game with a one hitter to help Hermon claim the 2012 League Championship with a 12-1 four inning Mercy Rule win.
Hampden entered the game 13-0, but suddenly found themselves down 5-0 after Hermon batted in the top of the first inning. Two Hampden errors, seven walks, and an RBI base hit by Olivia Nash accounted for the run production as Hermon sent 11 batters to the plate in the inning.
After MacManus shut down Hampden in order in the bottom of the first, Hampden pitcher Julia Sicard retired Hermon in order in the second inning. MacManus, who struck out the final two batters in the first inning, made it four straight by striking out the first two batters in the bottom of the second inning. Emily Dysart drew a walk and became the only baserunner Hampden would have until the fourth inning.
Hermon scored a run in the third inning on two hit batters and two walks, but after the next two batters went down on strikes, Jaelen Albert connected for an RBI single and MacManus delivered a 2-run double as Hermon finished the inning plating six more runs for an 11-0 lead in the third inning. MacManus rewarded her offense by retiring Hampden in order once again. The final out come on a knee sliding catch of a fly ball by right fielder Sarah Littlefield to preserve a no hitter for MacManus through three innings.
In the fourth inning, Hermon scored their final run on three walks and a passed ball for a 12-0 lead. Molly Stevens led off the fourth inning with a bunt single for Hampden’s first hit of the game, and eventually came all the way around to score on a passed ball. MacManus followed the Stevens base hit by retiring the next three Hampden batters on two strikeouts sandwiched around a line out to close out the game.
MacManus had a double and two RBIs to lead Hermon at the plate. Nash and Albert each chipped in with a single and an RBI to account for the Hermon hits.
MacManus faced just two batters over the minimum through the four innings. She allowed just one hit, walked one and struck out eight. She had at least one strikeout in every inning, struck out two in three of the four innings, and struck out the side in the second inning.
Stevens had the only base hit of the game for Hampden, and scored the teams only run. Emily Dysart was the only other base runner for Hampden. She reached on a walk and had a stolen base.
HERMON 506-1xx — 12 3 0
HAMPDEN 000-1xx — 1 1 2