HAVERFORD >> The appropriately named Heather Lazer laced a ball to center field for a leadoff single in the bottom of the first inning. The exit velocity was … well, really fast.
Lazer, a senior first baseman and All-Delco, is an immensely talented player. She ignited a hitting barrage Thursday night at Genthert Field as Haverford cruised to a five-inning, 14-3 win over Upper Darby.
The Fords sit atop the Central League standings with two weeks to play in the regular season. Lazer is a big reason for the team’s success.
“When we start hitting, we all feed off each other,” said Lazer, who is bound for Ursinus College. “It just keeps rolling. Everyone does a good job at keeping the rally going.”
Rallying is kind of what Haverford’s offense is built to do this season. It starts with Lazer at the top and spreads on down to Ali Murphy, the lefty-hitting speedster, and the heart of the order consisting of sluggers Lindsay Moran and Madison Lane.
Haverford pounded out 15 hits and scored 14 runs in four innings Thursday night. They batted around twice and scored in every frame except one.
And it all began with Lazer, who sent a rocket to the outfield and scampered to third on a two-base error. Murphy then knocked her home with a single as Haverford was off and running. Later, Lazer hit a, uh, laser for a triple and finished the night with two hits, two RBIs and a pair of runs scored. Murphy was 2-for-3 with a triple, an RBI and three runs scored. Moran added two knocks and Lane chipped in with an a single and two RBIs.
The entire Haverford lineup got in on the fun. Morgan Marchesani added two hits and three ribbies, Lauren Meyer was 3-for-4 with two runs, and Amber Moscoe had a single and two runs scored.
Haverford showed it’s the team to beat in the Central League with a resounding win over the defending champs.
“Upper Darby is always a good team. Even this year, they’re very solid,” Lazer said, “We just happened to catch them at the right time. We had many clutch hits that were finding gaps and we were just … playing our game.”
Murphy showcased her fleet feet and displayed a strong arm in center by throwing out Upper Darby All-Delco Sam Witmer attempting to tag up from second base.
“We’re friends with a lot of them, and it’s a big win,” Murphy said. “Last year they were Central League champions and we’re hoping to get there (this year). We work together very well and we’re hoping to keep winning our games.”
Gabrielle Gentile got the win from the circle. She scattered seven hits and three earned runs while striking out two over five innings.
Witmer and Camryn Young each went 2-for-3 with a double for Upper Darby.
Elsewhere in the Central League:
Penncrest 6, Marple Newtown 2 >> Maya Hartman struck out nine in a complete game. Julia Eckels had two hits and Victoria Reed singled and drove in a run for the Lions (13-2).
Strath Haven 7, Springfield 6 >> Malia Calciano was the winning pitcher and helped herself with two hits as the Panthers edged the Cougars.
Ridley 7, Lower Merion 1 >> Morgan Chapman racked up eight punchouts and allowed only one hit in five innings of work to get the win for the Green Raiders. Heather Bogardus (triple), Ashley Shanks and Abby McCoy paced the Ridley bats with three hits apiece.
Conestoga 2, Garnet Valley 0 >> No details were reported.
In the Catholic League:
Cardinal O’Hara 5, Archbishop Carroll 4 >> Julia Kush delivered the walkoff hit in the bottom of the eighth inning to lift the Lions to victory on senior day. All-Delco and senior shortstop Annemarie Banes went 5-for-5 with a pair of doubles.
Bonner & Prendergast 4, Lansdale Catholic 2 >> Meghan Sullivan broke a 2-2 tie with a run-scoring double in the sixth. Melissa Callahan knocked in the Pandas’ fourth run on a squeeze play. Molly McNulty pitched the win.
In the Ches-Mont League:
Sun Valley 12, Rustin 1 >> Madison Gutowiecz pitched a six-hitter, Claudia Davis went 3-for-3 with a double, three RBIs and two runs scored, and Bridget Thomas was 2-for-2 with two walks and two runs for the Vanguards (10-6), who won in six innings.
In nonleague action:
Academy Park 13, Pottstown 12 >> Camryn Suber scored the winning run in the seventh inning on a wild pitch. Jess Jirak and Seaira Anderson both homered for the Knights (3-9).
Phoenixville 5, Interboro 1 >> Sam Bellano singled home Kay Patton in the fifth inning to supply the Bucs with their run.