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Sunday Morning
Brakettes Strong Arm Spirit in Sweep

July 31 - The Stratford Brakettes rode a pair of dominant pitching performances to a twinbill sweep of the Lyons Spirit on Sunday morning, blanking their longtime rivals, 2-0 and 9-0.

Tatum Buckley made her 2017 pitching debut for the Brakettes in the second game and hurled a one-hitter with seven strikeouts, while also contributing a dazzling defensive play. She did not allow a walk and gave up just one single to Elaine Bedell.

Brandice Balschmiter (11-1) threw a two-hitter with seven strikeouts in the early contest, winning a pitcher's duel against the Spirit's Jenn Shellhammer. Shellhammer kept the Brakettes hitless until the bottom of the fifth inning, when Lauren Pitney singled to left.

Spirit centerfielder Bedell had the distinction of breaking up both Stratford pitchers' no-hit bids, as she reached on an infield single in the home fourth of the first game. The base hit came after Balschmiter retired the first 11 batters of the game in order.

Gabby Laccona reached second base on an error in left field in the bottom of the sixth, and scored on an RBI single by Amber Radomski. The hit was also misplayed in left, and allowed for Radomski to cruise into second. Casey Harding then came on to run for Radomski and scored on an RBI single up the middle by Brittany Younan, giving the Brakettes a 2-0 edge. Balschmiter retired the side in order in the seventh to secure the win.

Val Suto started the scoring in the second contest after reaching on an infield single in the first. Younan reached on a bunt single, which sent Suto to third, giving Stratford runners at the corners with no outs. Denise Denis lined a single to right field, scoring both runners, as Younan went first-to-home on the play.

Stratford added to the 2-0 advantage in the third, as Laccona led off with an infield single. Courtney Cashman drilled a double to the gap in left-center, bringing Laccona home for a 3-0 tally.

The Brakettes broke it open in the third, when they scored six runs to grow the commanding lead to 9-0.

Denis singled to start it off and stole second. Jolie Duffner singled into center to score Denis for a 4-0 lead. After back-to-back walks by Pitney and Harding, Laccona delivered a bases-loaded single to plate two more runs for a 6-0 score. Laccona took second on the play and went to third on a single by Cashman, which also scored Harding for a 7-0 lead.

Megan Hodgdon worked a walk to load the bases, and a passed ball brought Laccona home for the Brakettes' eighth run. The passed ball pushed both Cashman and Hodgdon up a base, and Cashman scored the game's final run when Suto reached on an infield error, closing out the scoring at 9-0.

The Brakettes and Spirit will return to action on Saturday night at 7:00 in Lyons, PA, when the Spirit host a round-robin with the Brakettes and New York City Havoc. The Brakettes will face both teams once on Saturday night, and will play another split doubleheader with the Spirit and Havoc on Sunday morning, starting at 10:00. All Brakettes games will be webcast on brakettes.com

Sunday morning, July 30th vs. Lyons Spirit
First Game, 10:00 AM   Second Game
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 R H E
LYONS SPIRIT   0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 2
BRAKETTES 0 0 0 0 0 2 x 2 3 1
Batteries: Spirit- Jenn Shellhammer (L) and Jessica Strong; Brakettes- Brandice Balschmiter (W, 11-1) and Jenn Vazquez
 
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 R H E
LYONS SPIRIT    0 0 0 0 0 0 1 1
BRAKETTES 2 1 6 0 x 9 12 1
Batteries: Spirit- Bekah Slattery (L), Liz Gall (3) and Sarah Maulorico; Brakettes- Tatum Buckley (W, 1-0) and Megan Hodgdon