Fannett Metal eliminates Lady Crusaders from ‘A’ tourney

LORETTO – The Elk County Catholic Lady Crusader softball team saw their season come to an end Friday afternoon at St. Francis University in Loretto, where they suffered a tough 2-1 loss to the Fannett Metal Lady Tigers.Elk Catholic ended the season with a fine 20-4 record. They were the District 9 Class A champs and won the Elk County Tournament.Friday’s game was a pitcher’s duel between Elk Catholic’s Taylor Schlimm and Fannett Metal’s Blaire Lauthers. Schlimm worked six innings, giving up four hits, walking three and striking out eight. Lauthers gave up three hits, walked four and struck out 15.Getting the three hits for Elk Catholic were Jessie Ginther, Kristy Hanes and Taylor Schlimm, all with singles.“Fannett Metal played well and their pitcher (Blaire Lauthers) did a very good job, but we helped her too much going for the big swing,” said ECCHS coach Joe Coroso. “Our discipline at the plate wasn’t very good today.”“We had a great season overall and we are very proud of the team,” said Coroso.“There was a bad call at the plate and I normally don’t criticize calls,” said Coroso about Fannett Metal’s first run of the contest in the bottom of the third inning.“We are going to miss our seniors,” he added.Appearing for the last time in uniform for the Lady Crusaders were Taylor Schlimm, Lyndsey Trumbull and Jena Struble.Elk Catholic were the visitors Friday. In the top of the first, the Lady Crusaders stranded a runner as Kristy Hanes walked with two outs but was left on base. The Lady Tigers left two runners on base in their half of the inning.Elk’s Rachel Stauffer reached base on an error with two outs in the top of the second, but she was left stranded. Fannett Metal also left a runner stranded in the home half of the inning.The top of the third saw Jessie Ginther single with one out. With two outs, Hanes singled, scoring Ginther. Hanes was thrown out trying to stretch her hit into a double, ending the ECC inning. In the home half of the inning, Megan Dougherty walked. With one out, Lauthers and Rhodes had back-to-back singles. Dougherty scored on Rhodes’ single, while courtesy runner Alexis Mackey was thrown out at third on a throw from catcher Hanes to third baseman Lyndsey Trumbull.The Lady Crusaders left a runner stranded in the top of the fourth inning. In the home half of the inning, Fields doubled for Fannett Metal and Zeger reached base on an error. With one out, Laye hit into an infield out, scoring Fields to give the Lady Tigers the 2-1 lead.The Lady Crusaders saw Abbey Bauer lead off with a walk. Pinch runner Mackenzie Neureiter was caught stealing. The next two batters went down in order. Fannett Metal went down in order in the home half of the inning.Hanes walked with one out in the top of the sixth. Schlimm followed with a single. The next two batters were put down in order. Fannett Metal went down in order in the home half of the sixth.Lauthers struck out the side in the top of the seventh as Fannett Metal advanced with the 2-1 victory.Fannett Metal will play Chartiers Valley in the Western Final Monday at noon at St. Francis University.