Maggie Balint

Recap: Three Team McCleney players take top 3 in 2-1 victory

© Athletes Unlimited, LLC 2022 / Credit: Jade Hewitt Media
Bruce Miles
Aug 27, 2022

ROSEMONT, Ill. — Early but not often.

Team McCleney and Team Chidester did all of their offensive work early Saturday, scoring all of their runs in the first two innings in a 2-1 victory for Team McCleney at the Parkway Bank Sports Complex.

Haylie McCleney’s squad made two first-inning runs stand up as the Purple team improved to 2-0 for the weekend. An RBI double by Sam Fischer and a sacrifice fly by Andrea Filler against Mariah Mazon (2-5) in the top of the first were all the runs Team McCleney needed.

Team Chidester scored its only run in the bottom of the second inning on a two-out RBI single by Sydney Sherrill.

Strong relief pitching  was the order of the day for Team McCleney. After Danielle Watson started and pitched two innings of one-hit, one-run ball, Maggie Balint (2-1) pitched three scoreless innings giving up three hits and striking out two. Balint won MVP 2 honors. Rookie Peyton St. George continued the shut-down act, working two innings, giving up one hit and striking out three to earn her first save of the season. St. George won MVP 1 honors. Fischer was named the game’s MVP 3.

Sis Bates once again flashed the leather in the field. The Team McCleney shortstop made a backhand diving catch of Amanda Chidester’s line drive in the bottom of the third inning to start an inning-ending 6-3 double play. In the fourth, Bates made a leaping backhand stab of Kelsey Harshman’s line drive to rob her of a hit.

HOW IT HAPPENED

With one out in the bottom of the first inning, Shannon Rhodes and Erika Piancastelli drew back-to-back walks. Fischer followed with a long double to center field to score Rhodes. Filler’s deep foul fly to left field was deep enough to score Piancastelli with the second run of the inning.

LEADERBOARD IMPACT

Entering Saturday’s second game, the leaderboard took on a decidedly Team McCleney look, with McCleney, Rhodes and Fischer holding the top three spots. McCleney moved up from fourth place with 120 points. Rhodes advanced from fifth place, with 126 points. Fischer moved up from sixth with 158 points. Chidester fell two spots, from third to fifth.

GAME NOTES

  • Kiki Stokes-O’Connor led off with a double in the bottom of the third inning for Team Chidester. It was Stokes-O’Connor’s third hit of the season. Two of those hits are doubles.
  • Piancastelli walked and scored a run in the first inning for Team McCleney. It was Piancastelli’s 12th base on balls of the season, tying her for the league lead with Amanda Lorenz.
  • Rhodes had her season-best 13-game hitting streak snapped. Rhodes, however, did walk twice. She was the only player who had hit safely in every game this season entering Saturday.
  • Chidester picked up her 50th career Athletes Unlimited hit with a single in the sixth inning. She joins McCleney, Victoria Hayward and Tori Vidales as players with at least 50 career hits in Athletes Unlimited

GAME MVPS

  • #1 – Peyton St. George (Team McCleney, +60)
  • #2 – Maggie Balint (Team McCleney, +40)
  • #3 – Sam Fischer (Team McCleney, +20)

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