King Philip Softball Heading Back To South Sectional Finals Sunday
Meg Rico struck out 17 and Cayleigh McCarthy hit a two-run homer as the Warriors beat Silver Lake 13-0. King Philip will face Bridgewater-Raynham at Taunton High at 3 p.m.
Two games into the MIAA Division I-South softball tournament, the No. 1 King Philip Warriors were just getting by with one and two run wins and the phenomenal pitching of senior Meg Rico.
“I promised the team I will throw until I have to," Rico told her teammates earlier. " We just need to get a run. I will do anything I can in my power to not let them get runs so just work your hardest and put some runs on the boards.”
Rico got the run support she was looking for in the Warriors' 13-0 win over the No. 5 Silver Lake Lakers in the semifinal round of the tournament, Saturday in Taunton.
“We’re a good, solid hitting team; it’s just a matter of getting the repetitions kind of necessary,” KP head coach Jim Leonard said.
The Warriors will now play in their third straight South Sectional final tomorrow at 3 p.m, against No. 2 Bridgewater-Raynham at Taunton High School.
It was another blowout performance in the circle for Rico as she struck out 17 for the second time in the tournament while only walking two and throwing 67 strikes on 90 pitches.
Striking out the side for the first five innings in a row, it took until the top of the sixth for the Lakers to get a hit and the bottom of the seventh with two outs to get a runner to third base.
“You kind of change the definition of what the norm is with her,” Leonard said about Rico. “She’s a very consistent pitcher. Has great command of her pitching. We have all the confidence in the world every time we put her in the circle.”
At the plate, Rico was also a perfect 4-4, scoring four runs and getting two RBI in the process.
Tori Constantin (three hits, two RBI) got things started at the plate for the Warriors in the first inning with a triple to centerfield brought Rico home from first base and gave KP the 1-0 lead over the Lakers.
Cayleigh McCarthy (three hits, 5 RBI) started a very successful day with a two run RBI double in the bottom of the second inning to extend the lead to three. McCarthy would later bat in Anna O’Neill with a single in the third inning and smashed a two run homer to left field in the bottom of the fifth.
“She (McCarthy) had a home run last year in the tournament here. Another real solid home run and that’s what she’s capable of,” Leonard said of McCarthy’s performance.
The game was put out of reach in the bottom of the third when in addition to McCarthy’s efforts, a RBI double by Olivia Godin scored Rico’s second run of the game and courtesy runner Breanna Shaffer scored on a double by O’Neill.
Up 11-0 during the bottom of the fifth inning, the Warriors got a couple more insurance runs when Amy Nolan scored on a Rico single and Rico herself scored off a Meg Carnase fly out.
With a win tomorrow, the Warriors can clinch their third south sectional title in a row and advance to the state semifinals.