Latin Academy won its fifth straight Boston City League softball championship yesterday at Cobe Field in a rematch from last year, rallying to defeat East Boston, 5-2.
The Dragons (12-12) managed five hits, and capitalized on opportunities in the third, fifth, and sixth innings to push runners across the plate and secure the title.
East Boston (12-8) went up, 1-0, in the first inning, utilizing small ball. Nicolette D’Andrea dropped a perfect bunt down the third-base line and beat the throw to first. The next batter walked. Vanessa Bernabei laid down a sacrifice bunt and the speedy D’Andrea scored from second on the play.
Eastie scored again in the third, again showcasing its talent with small ball and speed. Hannah Lunetta reached on a bunt down the third-base line, stole second and third, and reached home on an overthrow by the catcher, giving the Jets a 2-0 advantage.
The Dragons struck in the bottom half of that inning when Julianne Coleman reached on an error, advanced to second and third on fielder’s-choice grounders and scored on a passed ball.
“We didn’t come out intense today at all,’’ said Latin Academy coach Rocco Zizza. “When you don’t have that intensity you make mistakes. We just didn’t hustle the first few innings.’’
The Dragons are a young team. They started five sophomores and three freshmen. Although they got the win, Zizza said they didn’t play with the same intensity a team with a lot of seniors does.
But the Dragons found their groove in the field by the fourth inning, led by senior pitcher Sydney McGrath. McGrath, the only starting senior, allowed two hits, and struck out 10.
“We tried to manufacture runs and capitalize in a small ball kind of game,’’ said East Boston coach Thomas Elliott. “That was our plan of attack against that young lady [McGrath] who’s been shutting us down for four years. You have to score more than two runs against a good team.’’
Alexis Kenney was the spark the Dragons needed in the fifth, leading off with a single up the middle. Kenney advanced to second, third, and scored on three passed balls.
Coleman then reached on a bunt and eventually came around to score on another passed ball.
Both Rachel Kerrigan and Aurora O’Brien singled and scored on Eastie errors in the seventh to provide the final margin.