KENNETT SQUARE >> After West took a loss to Coatesville on Wednesday, the Whippets learned one thing for certain—the Ches-Mont, once again, was not going have have many push-overs. They’d have to fight hard and play hard for every last run and every last out.
Thursday at Kennett, West got solid patching from the tandem of starter Emily Williams and reliever Amanda Seckinger, got some timely hitting, and took advantage of some Kennett (1-2) miscues in a six-run third for the Whippets, and won by a score of 8-1 to improve to 2-1 on the season.
“All the other teams want to come out strong,” said Williams. “Coatesville wants to show what they have, and so do we. It was good to come out and get the win today. We’re starting to hit the way we know we can as a team. But we can never count anyone out.”
West got on the board right away. Lead-off hitter Caitlyn Coker reached on a bloop single to short left, then promptly swiped second. A wild pitch later, and she stood sixty feet from home, and covered that distance on a sacrifice fly to deep right from Jamie Rothenberger (2 for 3, 2R, 2 RBI).
Coker showed why she covers the lead-off slot, going a perfect 4 for 4 on the day. In addition to the first inning, Coker doubled off the centerfield wall, beat out an infield single, and stroked another single to left, scoring twice and knocking in one run. But, like a true leader, shrugged off any praise.
“What I do as an individual doesn’t matter, only what we do as a team,” said Coker. “We have a lot of new people on this team, and we are still learning to play together. But it showed a lot that we were able to bounce back today and play as well as we did as a team.”
West coach Joey Germani didn’t hesitate with good things to say about his lead-off hitter.
“She’s an exceptional slapper,” said Germani. “And she really knows how to take what the defense gives her, and can put one down if that is what the situation calls for. It’s a great thing to have at the top of your order.”
It was the hitter at the other end of the order that got things going in the sixth. No. 9 hitter Eilene Andrus beat out a bunt, moving up to second on a wild pitch, and came around to score on Coker’s double. Nina Gallagher followed, reaching on an error. Coker came in to score, with Gallagher moving over to second as a throw sailed into right field.
Rothenberger was next, and delivered a single up the middle to plate Gallagher, moving to second on the throw home trying to get Gallagher. After Seckinger reached on an error, Williams helped her own cause with an RBI double off the fence in left. Courtesy runner Remy Ngo scored in Williams’ place when Hannah Greider reached on an error.
“We are just showing how inexperienced we are,” said Kennett coach Kevin Reigel, who saw Great Valley come away with a win after a big inning against the Demons Wednesday. “The other team does something right, then we make a mistake, and it just seems to snowball on us. But we are getting better every time out, and we just have to keep trying to get better every time we play, and this won’t be the same team you see at the end of the year.”
Williams went five innings in the circle to earn the victory, allowing a single run in the third. She scattered four hits, struck out seven, and did not walk a batter. Seckinger allowed just one hit in two innings of work, striking out two and walking none.
“You find out what kind of team you have when you see how they respond to adversity,” said Germani. “They came out today like yesterday never happened. They showed up today ready to play, attacked the pitcher they way we like, put them ball in play and let things happen.”
Kennett’s lone score came on singles from Ruthie Robets, Bailey Reigel, and an RBI ground out from Kylee Harvey, who also had a base hit for the Demons.
Downingtown West 1 0 6 0 0 0 1 –8
Kennett 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 –1
West AB R H RBI
Coker—C 4 2 4 0
Gallagher—2B 4 1 0 0
Rothenberger—SS 3 2 2 2
Seckinger—1B/P 4 1 0 0
Williams—P/1B 4 0 1 2
Ngo—CR 0 1 0 0
Greider—LF 4 0 1 0
Najim—DP 3 0 0 0
Incolingo—3B 3 0 0 0
Andrus—CF 3 1 1 0
Weinstein—FLX 0 0 0 0
Totals 32 8 9 4
Kennett AB R H RBI
Reigel—2B 4 0 1 0
Weaver—SS 3 0 0 0
Harvey—CF 3 0 1 1
Bowe—P 3 0 0 0
Oscar—C 3 0 1 0
McCunney—3B 3 0 0 0
O’Sullivan—RF 3 0 0 0
Smith—1B 3 0 1 0
Roberts—LF 3 1 1 0
Totals 28 1 5 1
West IP R H K BB
Williams (W) 5 1 4 7 0
Seckinger 2 0 1 2 0
Bowe (L) 7 8 9 7 0