Patch rumbles to D-II softball title
VAIHINGEN, Germany — The blazing stuff of freshman pitcher Kasy’e Lalau shut down the big bats of the AFNORTH Lady Lions on Saturday as the Patch Panthers won the Division II high school softball conference championship with a 17-1, 12-0 sweep.
“Kasy’e showed what was to come in the first game when she fanned the first three batters she faced,” said Patch coach Billy Henry. “She mowed them down all day. Kasy’e was truly in a zone.”
Lalau struck out 11 batters in the four innings she worked in the mercy-rule shortened game. She allowed just two hits, a single by Victoria Webber in the second inning and a triple by losing pitcher Aubri West in the third.
Third baseman Kelly De Santo, first baseman Lauren Sanchez and second baseman Elisa Nieves provided much of Lalau’s offensive support in the opener. Clean-up hitter De Santo was 4-for-4 with a bases-loaded triple. Sanchez clubbed a three-run homer, and Nieves connected for a double and triple in her two at-bats.
Sanchez, an All-Europe pitcher, started the second game but gave way to Lalau in the second inning. Lalau struck out seven more batters to combine with Sanchez for another Patch two-hitter.
Patch posted an 11-run first inning, highlighted by a Kelsey Russell home run, to end the suspense early in the nightcap.
Patch finished the regular season 7-1 in the league and earned the top seed in this week’s European Division II tournament Thursday through Saturday at Ramstein Air Base, Germany. The Panthers are the first team other than Bitburg to win the D-II league race since Mannheim turned the trick in 1999.
AFNORTH (5-3 in D-II) will also compete is the Europeans.