One play really changes everything.
That was what happened in the top of the first inning of game three in the AA Nassau County Championship Thursday at the Mitchel Athletic Complex. With a run in and runners on second and third and one out, Madison West hit a deep fly ball that should've been deep enough to score Danielle Cutuli from third, but Cutuli left early and ran home. Coach Cindy McCarthy yelled for Cutuli to come back to third, but Cutuli never re-tagged home plate and was declared out on appeal. That shifted the momentum, and Farmingdale went on to win 8-5.
"It was a mental mistake," McCarthy said. "It was one of many we made on the day."
The Jets took the lead in the first on an RBI double by Jamie Laird, but after the change in momentum from the appeal play, Farmingdale took over.
The tying run scored on an Emily Dorso RBI double, and then Kat Zabielski gave the Dalers the lead for good with an RBI single of her own. It was one of three RBI hits Zabielski had on the day.
"It's a great feeling," Zabielski said. "Any time you can help the team, it means a lot."
After it looked like East Meadow's Kerri Shapiro would limit the damage, Kristi Summus struck. She laced a three-run triple to give her team a four-run lead.
The Jets cut the lead to 5-2 when Cutuli homered in the third, but once again Farmingdale wasted little time responding. In the bottom half, the Dalers scored two of their own to open up a 7-2 lead. Zabielski homered, and then Jenna Crawford singled home Kerri Ossenfort. Farmingdale added another insurance run in the fourth when Zabielski singled home Isabella Carrao, who reached on an error earlier in the frame.
The six-run lead was more than enough for Carrao, who really settled in on the mound. From the third to the fifth innings, Carrao struck out seven straight batters.
The Jets got another run back in the sixth when Marissa San Antoni snuck a bunt single past the infielders to score Taylor Conti. The Jets even cut the lead to 8-5 in the seventh, as Shapiro singled in a pair, but time ran out on the Jets' County Championship hopes.
"We're a young team," McCarthy said. "They showed a lot of fight, but eight runs was just a bit too much."
Carrao, a senior who transferred to Farmingdale from St. Joseph's after her freshman year, felt the pressure of the world on her shoulders.
"Honestly, my heart was in my chest," Carrao said. "But I am proud to say that we got it done."Box Score 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 R H E East Meadow 1 0 1 0 0 1 2 5 11 2 Farmingdale 5 0 2 1 0 0 x 8 9 1
Winning Pitcher: Isabella Carrao
Losing Pitcher: Kerri Shapiro
Farmingdale will advance to the regional round, where they will compete against a Suffolk County team for the Long Island Championship on June 7.