In the early going this spring, Babylon appears to be one of the top teams, if not the cream of the crop, in League VII softball this season. The Lady Panthers, on average, outscore their opponents 11-3 and just recently defeated second-place Mount Sinai, 12-2, on Friday.
Hampton Bays, meanwhile, came into last week’s game at Babylon on a bit of a high, having run-ruled both Comsewogue and Elwood/John Glenn in non-league games. While the Lady Baymen (2-2 in League VI, 4-2 overall) stayed with Babylon (4-0 in League VI, 6-0 overall) for five innings, they couldn’t outlast the Lady Panthers, who won, 11-5, on April 11 to remain undefeated.
Babylon scored the game’s first runs, plating four runners in the bottom of the third inning to take a 4-0 lead. Hampton Bays responded with a run of its own in the fourth, as freshman Rebecca Harris singled in sophomore Jade Zaluski, who was courtesy-running for senior Nicole Yeager.
Babylon made it a 5-1 game thanks to a solo home run in the bottom of the fourth, but, again, Hampton Bays responded in the top of the fifth. With two outs, senior Meghan McManus hit a solo homer to make it a 5-2 ball game. Junior Karlie Troyan immediately followed with a double and eventually scored when Yeager reached on an error. Eighth-grader Marley Tyler then hit a two-run home run to tie the game at 5-5. Hampton Bays head coach Brian Dunkirk said it might have been the longest home run he’s ever seen a high school player hit—Babylon doesn’t have a fence on its field, but he confirmed that it would have gone out of any ballpark.
Babylon, though, came back in the bottom of the sixth inning, scoring four runs to take the lead for good. Dunkirk simply said that his team was bested at the plate—it wasn’t fielding mistakes that led to the loss. Babylon outhit Hampton Bays by a margin of 13-6.
“They were more aggressive at the plate than us, and that was our downfall—we just didn’t get the hits,” he said.
Tyler finished 2 for 3 with the two-run homer, while Harris was 1 for 2 with the RBI.
Dunkirk said that because Hampton Bays and Babylon have had a good rivalry in softball the past few years, his team took the loss a little hard. But after what he saw in a multi-team scrimmage this past weekend, he’s confident they can get past it.
“Win or lose, I wanted to see where our team was at,” he said. “The past couple of days, we’ve worked on a few things and, in the three games they played, they did much better. Babylon is a good team—they just beat Mt. Sinai, 12-2. We had our chances. We had the bases loaded a couple of times. We just couldn’t get that timely hit.”ON THE SCHEDULE: Tuesday, 4/17, vs. Mt. Sinai; Wednesday, 4/18, at Port Jefferson, 4:30 p.m.; Saturday, 4/21, vs. Westhampton Beach (at Red Creek Park), 7 p.m.