April 12, 2006

Lady Bonackers Have Strength In Pitching

East Hampton softball coach Lou Reale knew entering the 2006 season that his East Hampton softball team had two exemplary pitchers that were capable of keeping the Bonackers opponents' offense at a minimum whenever given the opportunity. Now, they're proving him right.

Kristen Carroza, a senior, was a perfect 7-0 last year, striking out 85 batters and walking only 10, showing both above-average command and movement on her pitches. Jessie Stavola, an All-County selection as a junior last season, compiled a fabulous 16-2 record with her power pitching, striking out 162 on her way to being regarded as one of the premier strikeout artists on Long Island. Stavola was recently featured in Newsday, where she was named one of the players to watch this season.

In her first start of the year back on March 22, Stavola held Pierson hitless, striking out 13 of the 15 batters she faced in five innings and helped lead the Bonackers to a 15-0 non-league win. "Jessie's worked extremely hard during the off season and she's a big part of this team," Reale said in an earlier interview. "Both of our pitchers worked really hard in the winter."

In her next start on March 27, Stavola struck out 11 and allowed only four hits in seven innings as East Hampton defeated William Floyd 7-0 to record her second straight shutout.

Not to be outdone, Carroza dominated Rocky Point in the Bonackers' League V opener on March 30, tossing a one-hitter without issuing a walk while striking out eight batters as East Hampton cruised to an 8-1 victory. Then, four days later, Carroza pitched another one-hitter in a 6-0 Bonackers win over Comsewogue, striking out a season-high nine and walking only one to pick up her first shutout of the year.

Outfielder Deven O'Brien and centerfielder Myhoa Nguyen provided the offensive spark for the Bonackers in that game as each went 2-for-3 with a double and two RBI.

East Hampton suffered its first League V loss last Thursday at the hands of Kings Park, falling to the pitching of pitcher Nicole McKee who allowed three hits in a 2-0 shutout. Stavola took the loss in that game although she pitched well, throwing six shutout innings.

Combined, Stavola and Carroza have allowed three runs to cross the plate in 29 innings this season. Make no mistake; the level of East Hampton's success this season rests on the arms of its two star pitchers.

The Bonackers (4-1 overall, 2-1 in league play) traveled to Florida this week to compete in the Walt Disney World Wide World of Sports 10-game tournament before playing their next League V game next Wednesday at Shoreham Wading-River.

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