East Providence stays alive in Division I softball tourney
Townies handle host Chariho in losers' bracket contest
RICHMOND — The East Providence High School softball team advanced to the final four of the 2017 Division I state championship tournament after the Townies defeated fifth-seeded Chariho, 7-2, on the road in the losers’ bracket Thursday afternoon, June 8.
The seventh-seeded Townies never trailed after score twice in the top of the first inning. The host Chargers leveled the score with a pair in the bottom of the second, but E.P. plated two more in the third to retake the lead then added three in the sixth to add some insurance.
Townies’ catcher Alyssa Guarino singled, tripled and homered while driving in three of the E.P. runs. Her home run, a two-run shot, accounted for the first inning runs. Her single in the third plated another tally. And she scored on Katie Atwell’s base hit in the sixth after her triple. Sophomore pitcher Taylor Babcock allowed five hits as the Townies improved to 13-9 overall for the season. Atwell had two hits and drove in a pair.
“She was phenomenal,” EPHS head coach Rob Traverse of Guarino, the Townies’ junior receiver. “She got us off and running. She really set the tone that we could do this.”
Sadie Patterson doubled with two out in the first, setting the table for Guarino, who three pitches later lofted a shot out of park.
The Chargers leveled in the second, using three hits off of Babcock to plate both runs. But the Townies answered right back in the third as Guarino singled with bases loaded and Atwell drove in the other with a fielder’s choice.
“Babcock was real good. The only she got behind was the second inning, but other than that she scattered the hits,” said Traverse. “And then we came right back with the runs in the third.”
East Providence advances to the losers’ bracket semifinal and a date opposite either LaSalle or Coventry Saturday afternoon, June 10, at 3 p.m. at Rhode Island College. The Rams and Oakers played Friday, June 9, as did top-seeded Moses Brown and North Kingstown, who met in the winners’ bracket final.
“Overall, I feel so good for them. We set a few goals at the beginning, one being to make playoffs, two was to host a playoff game and the third was to get to RIC. It’s farthest we’ve gone since 2005,” Traverse added. “You hear coaches talk all the time about their teams, playing hard and showing the commitment, but these kids have really done that. It really has been one of those years with this team. That’s why I’m so happy for them.”