By Lorenzo Recupero
For the second consecutive year – and the 20th time over the past 21 seasons – Everett High School softball will compete for a state championship in the division 1 MIAA tournament.
The Lady Tide (11-6) picked up their 10th win, the magic number to clinch a playoff berth, with a, 14-0, thrashing of Waltham on Friday. They followed that triumph up on Saturday in Salem, coming out on top, 9-6, behind timely hitting (10 hits in the second inning) and a strong performance on the mound.
Friday’s victory over Waltham was the cherry on top for a small group of seniors that were honored before the game as part of the team’s Senior Night celebration at Glendale Park. Included in the group of graduating athletes were four-year starter Kaylee Nearen, Yalixa Colon, Rachel Zullo and Sidney Hennessey.
The bullpen combination of Ariana Garay (7-0, 1.83 ERA), who picked up her second shutout in the win over Waltham, and Celeste Fuccillo, who fanned 9 batters against Salem and leads the team with 50 Ks, proved to be the driving forces in both wins.
That is hardly a surprise, though. The potent duo has been getting it done all season long.
“We are playing tougher teams this year and both pitchers have stepped it up, sharing the responsibilities,” said head coach Stacy Schiavo of her standout junior and sophomore pitchers. “Both have impressed the coaches and fans with their ability to pitch their best game. And if there have been hits [in games], they know the defense will support them,” said Schiavo.
The team still has 3 more games slated to be played before the postseason starts, but coach Schiavo is still excited to see what the teams look like in the next stage of the year.
“The team is excited to make the playoffs and are looking forward to competing against teams outside of their league,” she said. “We are taking each game at a time at this point focusing on improving our record for the tournament,” said Schiavo.
The Lady Tide will finish their regular season tune-up with home games against Lynn Classical (6/1 @ 5PM) and Salem (6/3 @ 4PM).