Millington Vs. Algonac – – MHSAA Division 3 Softball Semifinal – – The Bleacher Denizen – – June 17, 2022 – – by Chuck Krafft

Today, the Muskrats from Algonac will take on the Cardinals from Millington to see who will play in the State Final Game tomorrow morning. It’s a great morning to be at Secchia (softball) Field on MSU’s campus to take in the game. The last couple days of blogging, your Bleacher Denizen (and everyone else, to be fair) had to endure scorching temperatures. Your Bleacher Denizen considers himself to be quite fortunate that he does not have to risk entire body parts melting to watch the game!!

While we wait for the teams to warm up, why don’t we share some Good Vibrations from the Beach Boys via solo piano on my “Chuck Krafft” You Tube Channel.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3482fQh0Rdo

Algonac brings a Number 4 Ranking and a 32-3 record into the game. Ella Stephenson is batting .650 with 16 home runs and 63 RBI as well as 28 stolen bases. Kenna Bommarito has a .527 average with 15 doubles and 37 RBI. She also pitches and has a 17-2 record with a 1.64 ERA and 181 strikeouts. Sierra Vosler is batting .419 with 41 RBI and 14 stolen bases. Brianna Thomason contributes a .410 average to go with 34 RBI. Other top hitters include Jaycee Reams, Camdin Thaler and Maria Simpson. Deanna DeLange has an 11-0 record with a 1.18 ERA when she pitches.

The Millington Cardinals are rated Number 1 and have a 33-3 record. Ashley Ziel has a 25-3 record pitching to go along with a 1.64 ERA and 209 strikeouts. At the plate, she is the Cardinal leadoff batter and hits .339 to go along with 10 doubles and 42 runs. Catcher Trinity Fessler bats .475 and also has 18 doubles and 44 RBI. Lilly Sherman is batting .516 with 21 doubles and 51 RBI. When she pitches, she is 8-0 with a 2.38 ERA. Dylan Holmes is batting .472 with 11 doubles and 35 RBI. Leah Coleman and Emma Dickie are also batting over .400.

Here are the starting lineups. Algonac will bat first and Millington will be the home team.

ALGONAC:

Kenna Bommarito p

Ella Stephenson cf

Sierra Vosler rf

Jaycee Reams 3b

Brianna Thomason 2b

Maria Simpson ss

Sophia DuVernay c

Deanna DeLange 1b

Camdin Thaler lf

MILLINGTON:

Ashley Ziel p

Leah Coleman rf

Lilly Sherman 1b

Trinity Fessler c

Dylan Thomas ss

Emma Dickie cf

Falon Wilson 2b

Shannon Ziel lf

Kendall Payne dp

Leila Damm will play third base, but will not bat.

It is now time to review the events of this game through the aging eyes of an Ancient Bleacher Denizen whose softball career was ruined when the softball powers that be refused to allow him to use a catapult to throw balls in from the outfield.

Millington Pitcher Ashley Ziel retired out the Algonac leadoff batter in the top of the first inning on a grounder to the shortstop. Ella Stephenson belted a home run over the centerfield fence. Ashley Ziel struck out the next batter. Jaycee Reams drew a walk. Ashley Ziel struck out the next batter to end the inning.

Algonac scored one run in the top of the first inning to take a 1-0 lead.

Muskrat Pitcher Kenna Bommarito retired the three Cardinal hitters in the bottom of the first inning on a grounder to third base, a fly to second base and a fly to right field.

Cardinal Pitcher Ashley Ziel retired the first two Muskrat hitters in the second inning on a popup to the shortstop and a fly to left field. Millington First Baseman Lilly Sherman made a perfectly timed leap to snare a line drive off the bat of Deanna DeLange to get the third out.

Kenna Bommarito retired the first Millington batter in the bottom of the second inning on a bouncer to second base. Dylan Holmes drilled a single through the pitcher’s legs and up the middle. Kenna Bommarito struck out the next two batters to end the inning.

Camdin Thaler opened the top of the third inning for Algonac with a solid single to left field. Millington Centerfielder Emma Dickie made a nice running catch coming in to record the first Muskrat out of the inning. Camdin Thaler advanced to second base on a passed ball. Camdin Thaler moved up to first base when Ella Stephenson was safe on an error. Ella Stephenson stole second base to put runners at second and third base with one out.

Ashley Ziel struck out the next two batters to end the inning while preventing any scoring.

In the bottom of the third inning, Kenna Bommarito retired the first two Millington batters on a strikeout and a bunt to the pitcher. Ashley Ziel hustled down the first base line and was safe on an error. Ashley Ziel stole second base. Kenna Bommarito struck out the next Cardinal batter to end the inning.

Brianna Thompson beat out an infield single to open the top of the fourth inning for Algonac; she advanced to second base on a sacrifice bunt by Maria Simpson. Ashley Ziel struck out the next two Muskrat batters to end the inning.

Millington’s fourth inning leadoff batter was out on a grounder to second base. Trinity Fessler singled to left field. Kenna Bommarito struck out the next two hitters to end the inning.

After four full innings, Algonac held a 1-0 lead.

Ashley Ziel retired the first two Algonac hitters in the top of the fifth inning on a strikeout and a grounder to the shortstop. Ella Stephenson singled to left field. Cardinal Catcher Trinity Fessler rifled a throw to second base to catch the runner stealing for the third out.

Algonac Pitcher Kenna Bommarito retired the three Cardinal hitters in the bottom of the fifth inning on two strikeouts and a foul fly to third base.

Sierra Vosler tripled to left field to open the top of the sixth inning for Algonac. The next Muskrat hitter was out on a popped up bunt to the pitcher. Brianna Thomason beat out an infield single to drive Sierra Vosler home. Maria Simpson singled and Brianna Thomason advanced to second base. Sophia DuVernay walked to load the bases. Ashley Ziel retired the next two batters on a strikeout and a foul fly to third base to hold Algonac to one run for the inning.

Algonac scored one run in the top of the sixth inning to boost its lead to 2-0.

Ashley Ziel beat out an infield single to lead off the top of the sixth inning for the Cardinals. Kenna Bommarito retired the next Millington hitter on a popup to the pitcher. Ashley Ziel took second base on a groundout to second base by Lilly Sherman. Trinity Fessler singled up the middle to drive Ashley Ziel home. Kenna Bommarito struck out the next batter to end the inning.

Millington scored one run in the bottom of the sixth inning to trim the Algonac lead to 2-1.

The Muskrat leadoff batter in the top of the seventh inning was out on a liner to second base. Ella Stephenson singled to left field and went to second base on a passed ball. Cardinal Centerfielder made a nice running catch to retire the next Algonac batter. Jaycee Reams singled to center field to drive in Ella Stephenson. Ashley Ziel retired the next hitter on a grounder to third base to end the inning.

Algonac scored one run in the top of the seventh inning to extend its lead to 3-1.

Emma Dickie singled to left field to lead off the bottom of the seventh inning for Millington. Kenna Bommarito retired the next hitter on a popup to third base. Shannon Ziel beat out an infield single to push Emma Dickie to second base. Ashley Ziel singled to deep centerfield to drive in Emma Dickie and Shannon Ziel to tie the game. Leah Coleman doubled to deep right-centerfield to drive in Ashley Ziel, who raced home with the winning run!! Whatta finish!!! (Your Bleacher Denizen apologizes to grammarians everywhere!)

Millington pulled this victory out of the jaws of defeat with some great clutch hitting!!! These Cardinals sure know how to put the “E” in excitement!

I would also like to congratulate the Algonac Muskrats on a fantastic season!

Ella Stephenson had a home run, two singles and one RBI for Algonac. Brianna Thomason had two singles and one RBI. Jaycee Reams had a single and one RBI. Sierra Vosler clouted a triple. Maria Simpson and Camdin Thaler each had a single.

Kenna Bommarito pitched the entire game and struck out ten Cardinal batters.

Leah Coleman had a double and two RBI for the Cardinals; this included the game winner!! Ashley Ziel and Trinity Fessler each had two singles and one RBI. Dylan Thomas, Emma Dickie and Shannon Ziel each had a single.

Ashley Ziel pitched the complete game. She struck out eight batters and gave up only two earned runs.

Your Bleacher Denizen will be here to cover Millington’s final game tomorrow!!

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