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Throop - Brittany Pavelski's made a name for herself with her ability to change speeds on the mound.
Although overshadowed by her mound performances, Pavelski's speed on the basepaths was nearly as impressive during her brilliant four-year career at Blue Ridge.
Pavelski used the speed generated by her pitching arm and by her legs Wednesday night while leading the Division IV all-stars to a 5-0 victory over the Division I all-stars in the Lackawanna League Senior Softball Classic at Mid Valley High School.
Pavelski started and pitched four shutout innings. She also stole two bases and scored a run.
The Division IV stars carried a 2-0 lead from the first inning until the sixth. Pavelski's baserunning produced one of those runs and set up the other.
Old Forge's Marissa Hastings was on second with a lead-off double in the bottom of the first inning.
Mountain View's Amanda Breese struck out Pavelski for what appeared to be the first out. The ball got just a few feet away from catcher Liz Killeen and what normally wound be a routine throw down to first base turned into an adventure.
Pavelski hurried down the line, forcing a close play in which Elk Lake first baseman Tara Dymond was unable to hang on to the ball while reaching over her head for Killeen's throw.
Hastings came all the way around to score on the play.
Pavelski then stole second, went to third on a foul out just beyond first base and scored on a single by Bishop O'Hara's Renee Rozaieski.
In the conditions of an all-star game, Pavelski was free to take off on the first pitch both times that she reached base, including the fifth inning when she singled. She was already popping up out of her slide each time when the throw arrived.
"It depended more on the situation," Pavelski said of her opportunities to steal during the regular season. "I usually had Heather (Franks) up behind me and Heather or (Kate Donovan) would hit me in.
"I didn't have to steal too much."
Pavelski, who led Blue Ridge to a state title, a state runner-up finish and two district championships in her career, did her usual work on the mound.
She pitched four innings, giving up four hits and two walks while striking out three. Pavelski threw 51 of her 72 pitches for strikes. One of the walks came after the game's second batter, Marissa Chisdock of Riverside, fouled off seven pitches with two strikes.
Mia Sottile of Bishop O'Hara followed Pavelski and finished off the combined four-hitter. Sottile fell behind 3-0 on the first two batters she faced, but retired them as the start of nine straight batters that she put down while striking out three.
Pavelski was the only Susquehanna County player on the winning Division IV team.
County players were the starting pitchers for three of the four teams in the doubleheader.
Breese gave up two runs, just one earned, in four innings. She allowed five hits and two walks while striking out three.
Breese held Division IV scoreless after the two-run first. She retired the side in order in the third and ended both the third and fourth innings with strikeouts.
Elk Lake's Dymond and Jamie Sanfilippo played the entire game for the Division III team.
Sanfilippo was the game's defensive star with two impressive plays in the left field after starting the game in center field.
Hastings hit a high fly to left-center in the fifth inning. Running hard, while angling back, Sanfilippo reached over her head and made a bobbling catch.
Sanfilippo also made a long run on a Hastings flyball in the seventh inning to keep it to a sacrifice fly.
At the plate, Sanfilippo was 0-for-3.
Dymond led off the fourth inning with a single to left-center and finished 1-for-3.
Breese was 0-for-2 at the plate.
Five straight batters reached, including four on hits, in the sixth inning when Division IV tacked on three runs to produce the final margin.
Two teams were moved from the divisions they played in during the regular season to even out the number of available pitchers in order to keep the games more competitive.
Lakeland players moved from Division III and Forest City players from Division IV to join the Division II all-stars in the first game of the doubleheader.
Forest City's Amanda Rizner got the start on the mound and kept Division II in the game.
Division I added three runs in a sloppy seventh inning to win, 6-2.
Casey O'Dell, also of Forest City, came off the bench for the Division II team.
WEEK IN REVIEW
Moosic -- The Lackawanna League senior baseball all-stars played the next night in the Lackawanna Baseball Challenge at Lackawanna County Stadium.
The Lackawanna large school all-stars were in the process of taking an embarrassing beating when Montrose's Sean Brewer entered the game and settled things down considerably.
The first two Lackawanna pitchers had already allowed the Wyoming Valley Conference to score 11 runs on eight hits while getting just two outs when Brewer was called on in relief with two runners in scoring position in the top of the first inning.
Brewer got a strikeout to end the humiliating first inning and helped change the shape of the game which the Lackawanna League eventually lost, 13-5.
Brewer was even more impressive in the second inning when he struck out the side on nine pitches. He wound up giving up one run on two hits in the third while also recording his fifth strikeout.
Three Montrose players were on the team with Lackawanna Class AAAA and AAA all-stars.
Jeff Snyder started in left field and went 0-for-2.
Bill Overfield came off the bench to play left field and hit a ground-rule double in his first at-bat. He finished 1-for-2.
Brewer went 0-for-1 at the plate.
Six Susquehanna County players were on the Lackawanna Class A all-star team that lost the opener of the doubleheader, 5-4, when the Class AA all-stars scored two unearned runs in the bottom of the seventh inning.
Blue Ridge catcher Justin Herbert led the way, starting the game and going 1-for-1.
Forest City's Mike Green played the whole game in right field and finished 0-for-3.
Susquehanna's Ryan Dubas and Blue Ridge's Louis Villella were also in the starting lineup.
Dubas led off and played first base. He was 0-for-1.
Villella, the designated hitter, was also 0-for-1.
Tom Donovan of Blue Ridge came off the bench to play second base and go 0-for-2.
Forest City's Jeff Mead, another sub, went 0-for-2, but reached on a fielder's choice and scored during the three-run fifth inning that gave Class A its 4-3 lead.
Brendan Calafut of Lakeland had a two-run double in the first inning to give Class AA an early 2-0 lead. Austin McGoff of Lackawanna Trail, who walked in his other plate appearance, had the game-winning single with one out in the seventh and was named Most Valuable Player.
Nanticoke's Dan Benick, who homered, singled and drove in three runs in the first inning, was named MVP of the second game.
STEWART Gets Daytona Win
Daytona Beach, FL – Day-long rain showers prolonged the Pepsi 400 into the early hours of the morning, but when it was finally over, Tony Stewart, who led all but nine of the 160 laps, scored a dominating victory.
Stewart had Jamie McMurray and Dale Earnhardt, Jr. in hot pursuit, with just nine laps remaining, but they were unable catch him and had to settle for second and third, respectively.
After the race ended, Stewart climbed up to the flag stand to claim the checkered flag.
“I’m too fat to be climbing fences, but I had to do it once,” he said. “I finally got me a Daytona trophy.”
It was Stewart’s second consecutive victory. His other win came at Infineon Raceway on June 26.
Dale Earnhardt, Jr. equaled his best showing of the year with a third-place finish. It was his fourth top-five of the year and first in nine weeks. As good as it was, however, it only bumped him up two spots to 16th in the point standings. He is now 106 points out of Chase contention (within 400 points of the leader) and 158 out of the top-10.
“We fought real hard all night and got better track position as the night went on,” said Earnhardt. “And we got a lot of help from all our friends... I was telling everybody before that restart, that I don't think Rusty (Wallace) has ever bump drafted me in my career.
“He's always trying to pass me because we were such competitors, corporately. He decided to tell me, from spotter to spotter, that he would help me. So, that was awesome at the end. We both gained spots there, working together, and ended up with a good finish.”
A chain reaction started by a blown tire cost Greg Biffle the Nextel Cup Series points lead that he gained only last week.
"It just looked like Michael Waltrip cut a tire,” he said. “I couldn't tell. He got sideways by himself, and I'm not sure what happened. It's unfortunate. I tell you what, we had a good car. We worked our way up into the top 10. We got up in there, I don't know where we were, 12th or 13th there. It's unfortunate. That's just part of restrictor plate racing though. It's just a roll of the dice to see what happens here."
Top ten finishing order: 1. Tony Stewart, 2. Jamie McMurray, 3. Dale Earnhardt Jr., 4. Rusty Wallace, 5. Dale Jarrett, 6. Jimmie Johnson, 7. Jeff Gordon, 8. Mike Wallace, 9. Matt Kenseth, 10. Ken Schrader.
The current Chase for the Cup contenders: 1. Johnson-2378, 2. Biffle-2305, 3. Stewart-2242, 4. Sadler-2178, 5. R. Wallace-2173, 6. Newman-2115, 7. McMurray-2093, 8. Martin-2068, 9. Busch-2030, 10. Jarrett-2030, 11. Mayfield-2029, 12. Edwards-2027, 13. J. Gordon-1982.
Note: All these drivers are within 400 points of the leader.
TERESA Erred, WALTRIP Unsigned, Truex Signs, Daytona Beach, FL – Tony Eury, Sr., director of competition for Dale Earnhardt Inc., criticized owner Teresa Earnhardt's decision to swap Dale Earnhardt, Jr. and Michael Waltrip's equipment and crews, calling it "a bad move."
"I guess we made a bad move over the winter and our cars down there in the No. 8 shop weren't as good as we thought they were," said Eury, Sr., who was Earnhardt, Jr.'s crew chief last season.
In the move, Pete Rondeau was named crew chief for Earnhardt, Jr., while Tony Eury, Jr. was named crew chief for Waltrip. Eury, Sr. moved from crew chief into his current role.
Rondeau has since been released as Earnhardt, Jr.'s team has struggled this season. He is 18th in points entering Saturday night's Pepsi 400 at Daytona International Speedway.
"When you got something good I guess you should leave it alone. We won six races with him last year, maybe we should have been left alone," Eury, Sr. said.
Asked whose decision it was to make the swap, Eury, Sr. said, "All I know is I was called in the office the Monday after Homestead and told Teresa wanted me to be the director of motorsports and that was the job she wanted me to do. I've been there 20 years. What she wants me to do, that's what I do."
Eury, Sr. also said he did not believe Steve Hmiel, currently interim crew chief for Earnhardt, Jr., will remain in the same position beyond this season.
"The problem we have with Steve running that program right now is that Steve's (former) job is not getting done. We've taken a person here and a person there and spread his job over a number of people, but I don't think his job is getting done at the capacity it needs to get done," Eury, Sr. said.
Meanwhile Michael Waltrip, whose contract with DEI expires at the end of this season said that he hopes he can get a deal worked out soon, so he can spend a sixth season with DEI in 2006.
"I am just waiting to see what the deal is. I don't have any demands," Waltrip said. "It would be silly for me to make demands when I haven't heard what the plan is and when I hear the plan, then we will go from there.
"Everything is good as far as I know. I don't know of any reason to be worried."
Waltrip hinted that he has other opportunities available if his contract isn't renewed.
"I have realized that over the years that you better have a Plan B," Waltrip said. "If you don't, you're liable to be out in left field somewhere."
Waltrip is currently 15th in points.
Martin Truex, Jr., winner of Friday night’s Busch race announced he had signed a 2006 contract extension with DEI to drive its No. 1 Chevrolets next season in Nextel Cup, ending months of anticipation as he haggled over contract terms and explored options from other teams.
The top-10 Busch Series leaders: 1, Truex-2510, 2. Bowyer-2439, 3. Sorenson-2416, 4. Edwards-2296, 5. K. Wallace-2293, 6. Hamlin-2158, 7. Stremme-2073, 8. Lewis-2068, 9. Keller-1989, 10. D. Green-1966.
The top-10 Craftsman Truck Series leaders: 1. Setzer-1744, 2. Hamilton-1706, 3. Musgrave-1691, 4. Hornaday-1610, 5. Craven-1597, 6. Spencer-1587, 7. Cook-1562, 8. Sprague-1501, 9. Skinner-1479, 10. Crafton-1466.
The Cup and Busch Series cars are at Chicago, while the Craftsman Trucks go to Kentucky Speedway.
Saturday, July 9, Busch Series Chicagoland 300, race 19 of 35, 200 laps/300 miles, 2 p.m. TV: NBC.
Craftsman Trucks Built Ford Tough 225, race 13 of 25, 8 p.m. TV: Speed Channel.
Sunday, July 10, Nextel Cup Chicagoland 400, race 18 of 36, 267 laps/400 miles, 3 p.m. TV: NBC.
Racing Trivia Question: Bobby Allison has three Daytona 500 wins. When was his last Daytona 500 victory?
Last Week’s Question: How many Winston Cup championships has Rusty Wallace won?
Answer: Wallace’s only Winston Cup title came in 1989.
You may read additional stories by the Racing Reporter at www.race500.com. You may write him at P. O. Box 160711, Mobile, AL 36616.
Christy Glidden, daughter of Scott and Jeannye Glidden, Susquehanna, and an eighth grade point guard from Susquehanna Community High School, recently won the Team Championship Award at the prestigious Keystone State Invitational Basketball Camp, held at Albright College in Reading, PA.
The Keystone State Invitational Camps, which are certified by the NCAA, are held at Albright College and Slippery Rock University and annually bring together many of the best basketball players in the east.
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