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Section II softball tournament set

Section II softball tournament set

Shenendehowa, Ballston Spa, Ichabod Crane, Chatham, Whitehall top seeds
Section II softball tournament set
Ava Caputo has been a key contributor for Class AA top seed Shenendehowa.
Photographer: ERICA MILLER

Seeds, pairings, sites and dates for the Section II softball tournament were released Wednesday.

The No. 1 seeds are Shenendehowa in Class AA, Ballston Spa in Class A, Ichabod Crane in Class B, Chatham in Class C and Whitehall in Class D.

Action starts Thursday with 12 first-round games, seven of them in the Class B bracket.

Here are a few more things to know.

ON THE MOVE

No team in the Class AA bracket has repeated as champion since Shenendehowa's title-run from 2003-08, and that will continue now that 2018 titlist Ballston Spa has moved to Class A. Ballston Spa had an opportunity to repeat when it won the 2016 Class AA title, but fell short in the 2017 final against Shaker.

Greenville, which won the last three Class C championships, is playing at the Class B level this year.

2018 FINALS RECAP

Ana Gold scored on a fielder's choice grounder, racing from second base to home to break a 1-1, fifth-inning tie in Ballston Spa's 2-1 Class AA title-game win over Columbia. Grace Thompson hit an RBI double and Sarah Pritchard pitched in and out of trouble for the Scotties, who would advance to the state championship game.

Jess Haskins hit an RBI triple in the second inning and scored on Jess Farley's single, and Averill Park won its second straight Class A title with a 2-1 victory over South Glens Falls.

Section II Player of the Year Calista Phippen pitched a three-hitter and fanned 10, and Ichabod Crane bunched six runs in the third and fourth innings to beat Schuylerville 6-2 for its third Class B title in four years. The Riders went on to win the state championship when Phippen hurled a no-hitter and then a one-hitter in her final scholastic games.

Jazzmin Gibson's RBI double capped a three-run seventh, and Greenville defended its Class C title with a 5-4 win against Chatham.

Fort Ann used its 4-1 Section II Class D title-game win over Whitehall as a springboard toward its fifth state championship. The area title was Fort Ann's eighth in a row.

ON A ROLL

Shenendehowa made its last title-game appearance in 2016 and won its last Class AA flag the year before. The Plainsmen (18-2) have won 17 of 18 games since a season-starting 5-2 loss against Colonie, with only a 2-1 loss to John Jay mixed in. The state's  No. 2 team has forged its record with a combination of power and small-ball tactics, and with a solid one-two pitching duo of Mariana Abate and Ava Caputo. The Tandem no-hit Niskayuna last week in a 12-0 win.

ROUND THREE?

It will be an interesting rubber match should Ballston Spa (17-3) and Averill Park (15-5) end up meeting in a champion-vs.-champion Class A final. In league play, Averill Park handed Ballston Spa its first loss 6-2 before the Scotties posted a 9-1 win over the Warriors. They are both state ranked, as are South Glens Falls and Class A dark horses Mohonasen and Scotia-Glenville. 

STILL A THREAT

Ichabod Crane (18-1) has replaced Phippen with a double-team pitching combination of Marissa Wheeler and Bella Milazzo, and the pair have been awfully stingy in the Riders' climb to the state's No. 2 ranking. The pitchers authored back-to-back perfect games early in the season, and Milazzo added another one later on.

SECTION II TOURNAMENT

CLASS AA

Quarterfinals

Tuesday

1-Shenendehowa, bye; 7-Saratoga Springs at 2-Columbia, 4:30; 6-Guilderland at 3-Bethlehem, 4:30; 5-Shaker at 4-Colonie, 4:30.

Semifinals

May 30

At Luther Forest, 4.

Championship

June 4

At Luther Forest, 5.

CLASS A

First round

Thursday

9-Catholic Central at 8-Amsterdam, 1:30.

Quarterfinals

Tuesday

Catholic Central/Amsterdam at 1-Ballston Spa, 4:30; 7-Lansingburgh at 2-South Glens Falls, 4:30; 6-Troy at 3-Averill Park, 4:30; 5-Scotia at 4-Mohonasen, 4:30.

Semifinals

May 30

At Schalmont, 4.

Championship

June 4

At Luther Forest, 5.

CLASS B

First round

Thursday

1-Ichabod Crane, bye; 15-Hudson at 2-Mechanicville, 4:30; 14-Fonda at 3-Glens Falls, 4:30; 13-Taconic Hills at 4-Greenville, 4:30; 12-Schalmont at 5-Tamarac, 3; 11-Corinth at 6-Schuylerville, 4:30; 10-Cobleskill at 7-Cohoes, 4:30; 9-Watervliet vs. 8-Notre Dame-Bishop Gibbons at Rotterdam Girls' Softball League Fields, 4:30.

Quarterfinals

Tuesday

At higher seed, 4:30.

Semifinals

May 30

At Luther Forest, 4.

Championship

June 4

At Luther Forest, 5.

CLASS C

First round

Thursday

1-Chatham, bye; 2-Lake George, bye; 3-Greenwich, bye; 4-Hoosic Valley, bye; 12-Rensselaer vs. 5-Mayfield, at Gloversville, noon; 11-Canajoharie at 6-Maple Hill, 3:30; 10-Galway at 7-Hoosick Falls, 4:30; 9-Saratoga Central Catholic at 8-Fort Plain, 4:30.

Quarterfinals

Tuesday

At higher seed, 4:30.

Semifinals

May 30

At Moreau Recreational Park, 4.

Championship

June 4

At Moreau Recreational Park, 5.

CLASS D

Quarterfinals

Tuesday

8-Argyle at 1-Whitehall, 4:30; 7-North Warren at 2-Salem, 4:30; 6-Hartford at 3-Fort Ann, 4:30; 5-Heatly vs. 4-Germantown, at C-GCC, 4:30.

Semifinals

May 30

At Moreau Recreational Park, 4.

Championship

June 4

At Moreau Recreational Park, 5.

Reach Gazette Sportswriter Jim Schiltz at 518-395-3143, [email protected] or @jim_schiltz on Twitter.

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