Lincoln keeps pace in PVL title chase with win

Little shuts out Cougars
By: Joshua Gutierrez/Lincoln News Messenger
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The Lincoln High softball team kept their Pioneer Valley League title hopes alive by defeating visiting Center 7-0 last Thursday.

Behind a four-hit shutout, Avery Little led the Fighting Zebras (4-3) to their fourth PVL win. With three games remaining on the schedule, Lincoln needs to win out to threaten Bear River (7-0), Placer (5-2), and Colfax (4-3).

The sophomore starter scattered four hits and proved exceptional with runners in scoring position, holding Center 0-for-4 in those situations.

Little started and finished strong, allowing no hits in the first and second inning, as well as the sixth and seventh.

In the final frame, Little threw a total of three pitches which resulted in a line out, fly out and pop up in that order.

“I thought I did good,” said Little after the game. “I could have given up less walks.”

Little’s performance was backed by an impressive defensive effort, with shortstop Abi Lund and third baseman Samantha Wyatt controlling the infield.

In nine putout attempts, the duo was perfect. In the fifth inning, with two runners on and no outs, Wyatt’s feed to Lund covering third shifted the momentum back to Lincoln.

To support Little’s pitching, Lincoln put up four runs in the first inning.

Lund’s leadoff walk was followed by a Kaylee Avila bunt single. Matty Cunningham and Justina Thompson each had run-batted-in singles to follow.

With runners on first and second base, Sydney Flores belted the hit of the game into left-center field. Already scoring Cunnigham and Thompson, the speedy Flores turned second and slid into third base for a triple.

Cunningham added the last of her two RBI in the second inning, scoring Wyatt on a perfectly executed suicide squeeze.

Sienna Stone drove in the final run for Lincoln, scoring Faith Halbert on a single.

“We’re going for these last games. We’re taking care of business,” said Lincoln head coach Donna Tofft. “This is our push for the playoffs; we’re working on starting fast and finishing strong.”

PVL – Bear River 7-0, Placer 5-2, Lincoln 4-3, Colfax 4-3, Center 1-6, Foothill 0-7.

Schedule – at Placer May 2, Colfax at home May 7.