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Way North 14u girls are State Champs

The Way North 14u State Champs; front row, from left, Dani Chancey, Kaitlin Wood, Chelsea Payer, Alexa Planz, Emily Wood, Lily Stinehour; back row, Coach Ed Wood, Rebecca Hicks, Kalie Savage, Scorekeeper Tina Perreault, Shaniah-Rae Clement, Mariah Perreault, Erika Millett, Pitching Coach Lindsay Cote, Nadia Wasuta, Kayla Bosse, Coach Forrest Hicks (click for larger version)
July 21, 2010
Way North is on its way to the New England Tournament in Plaistow, starting Friday, July 30. Except for one inning in the loss against Plymouth, the team played exceptional defense, had solid pitching, and timely hitting to win the 14U Northern State Championship last weekend in Plymouth. This will be the fifth time in six years that this group has won the state championship at the various age levels. This team will try to break the runners-up curse as they have placed second in the New England Tournament in the last three years.

Way North opened the Northern State Tournament with a 13-3 win over Lebanon. Erika Millett and Mariah Perreault were on the mound, giving up only one hit. Emily Wood, Chelsea Payer, Rebecca Hicks, and Kalie Savage each had two hits. Their second game ended with a 21-0 victory over Connecticut Valley South. Dani Chancey, Kaitlin Wood, Millett, Nadia Wasuta, and Wood each had two hits. Hicks struck out ten and walked only one batter for the shut-out.

Saturday's game resulted in a 6-4 win over Plymouth. Wasuta and Kaitlin Wood went three for four, Payer was two for three, and Hicks was two for four. Millett went the distance on the mound with eight strikeouts and three walks. The game went down to the wire with Plymouth loading the bases in the bottom of the seventh. Kaitlin Wood made a running catch to end the game.

In the first game of the championships, Way North had a lead before Plymouth took advantage of a few Way North errors to take a 5-1 lead in the fifth inning. Way North loaded the bases in the sixth but failed to score, and in the seventh inning Hicks, Savage and Wasuta got three hits in a row to bring the score to 5-3. Way North failed to score again, losing 5-3 to Plymouth.

In the final championship game, Plymouth jumped to a 1-0 lead in the third inning. Way North came back to tie it in the fourth. Hicks singled to left field, Stinehour bunted her to second, and Payer laced a triple to left field. Way North took a 2-1 lead in the fifth, started by Wasuta getting on first base with a passed third strike. Kaitlin Wood bunted her to second, and Millett's liner to right field scored Wasuta. Plymouth tied it up again in the top of the sixth. The game winner came with a Hicks walk, a stolen base, and a Lily Stinehour game-winning single.

Hicks demonstrated stellar pitching, striking out six, walking two, and had the Plymouth batters off balance. After giving up a single in the top of the seventh, Millett came in as reliever. She struck out the first batter and then Payer gunned down Plymouth's resident speedster at third base. Millett induced a pop fly that she caught to end the game.

Littleton Chmber
Martin Lord & Osman
Varney Smith
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