Bucktail Bucks keep up with Montgomery, lose at home 7-6

Montgomery’s Morgan Tupper slides safely past a Kali Casper tag in yesterday’s 7-6 Lady Red Raiders win. (The Express/Kevin Rauch)

FARWELL — Going into yesterday’s game against Montgomery, the Bucktail softball team held a 4-7 record with just a negative 12 run differential in those eleven games. Take away the one lopsided loss in an 11-1 defeat of Muncy and the Lady Bucks have been in some really close games. Montgomery beat Bucktail, 3-2, when the teams met earlier in the season.

It didn’t seem that Tuesday would be more of the same for the Lady Bucks that were coming off of a loss on Monday, in which the team committed 14 errors.

The Lady Red Raiders led 4-0 in the top of the third when Bucktail made two errors and Morgan Tupper worked a walk, loading the bases. Abby Stryker’s roller to the right side of the field would register as a third Lady Bucks’ error in the inning, while giving Stryker a pair of RBI’s as Monty rolled up 6-0.

The Lady Bucks got into the scoring column off of a Makenzi Brennan hit in the bottom of the 5th, but the biggest hit of the game would be two batters later.

Bucktail lefty Kali Casper reached well out of the strike zone on a high pitch, but got all of it as she crushed a shot that bounced off of a retrieving right fielder’s glove. Two more Lady Bucks scored as the lead was cut to 6-4.

Tupper worked a walk in the top of the 6th and would again score following a Bucktail error putting Montgomery up 7-4.

With two runners on and two outs, Bucktail’s Emily Cross smoked an Emily Snyder pitch allowing two of her teammates to score, as yet again the Lady Bucks suddenly found themselves in a one run affair with the Lady Red Raiders.

After a scoreless top of the 7th, Bucktail took their last at bats with Casper picking up a one out walk before stealing second. With the Bucktail dugout buzzing, Snyder would force the next two Bucktail batters into groundouts, sealing a second one run win against the Lady Bucks.

Coach Mike Poorman rarely finds good in a loss, but with his team coming off of a 14 error game and trailing 6-0 at one time on Tuesday, he felt good about his team not folding.

“As a coach, I can come off of the field after this one knowing that our girls played well overall, we were down 6-0, things weren’t going our way, but we played hard through to the end,” Poorman summed up.

“Kayli’s two out hit today was exactly the kind of hit that we have been searching for all season, we aren’t getting those clutch hits, and we got just one today and almost pulled if off,” he continued. “We’re just not getting the breaks this year, you see Montgomery getting a few bloop hits here today, we aren’t getting those, we hit the ball hard but we’re just not getting any breaks, it’s been that way all season”.

“Costly errors are of course our biggest issue, even if we’d get a few more hits a game from hard hit balls, until we can stop the easy errors, we’re in for a tough season,” Poorman finished.

Massive numbers for the pitchers as in the win Snyder threw 139 pitches striking out eight and walking five. In the loss, Myka Poorman accounted for 134 pitches with 7K and 3BB. The Lady Bucks host Millville this afternoon after falling to 4-8.

Montgomery 7 runs, 7 hits, 7 errors: 2 0 4 0 1 0-7

Bucktail 6 runs, 6 hits, 7 errors: 0 0 0 4 2 0-6

Montgomery: Stryker 1 for 4, Saige Whipple 2-4, Snyder 1-3, Riley Fry 1-3, Katlyn Youn 1-3, Tupper 1-3.

Bucktail: Maria D’Onofrio 1-3, Poorman 1-3, Cross 1-4, Casper 3 -4.