Deposit senior Haley Linkroum is hoping her final state playoff appearance will go better than her team’s previous one.
So far, so good.
Linkroum went 3-for-4 with three RBIs and three runs scored, leading an 18-hit attack as Deposit cruised to a 16-4 victory over Section 9 champion Chapel Field in a state Class D softball quarterfinal at Union-Endicott.
Kassi Cook and Alea Tiffany also had three hits apiece for the Lumberjacks (19-6), who advance to the state Final Four next Saturday at Moreau Park in South Glens Falls. Two years ago, Deposit lost in the state Class D title game to Batavia Notre Dame, 1-0.
After some missed opportunities in the early going Friday, Deposit took control with a 10-run fourth inning that produced a 12-0 lead.
Linkroum had a two-run double in the inning and both Kate Tiffany and Alea Tiffany had two-run singles in the frame as Deposit sent 13 batters to the plate against Chapel Field freshman pitcher Natalie Bonagura.
“We started a little slow,” Linkroum said. “But once we figured out their pitching, we knew the bats would start coming around.”
Deposit coach Ed Swartout concurred.
“We talked about being patient,” Swartout said. “No disrespect to their pitcher, but we’re used to seeing a little bit more than that. I’m sure she’ll develop … we just felt it was a matter of time before we would make the adjustments we needed to make.”
Deposit took a 1-0 lead in the second inning when Kate Tiffany led off with a single and Aubrin Smith followed with an RBI double to left to bring Tiffany in.
An inning later, Deposit made it 2-0 when Linkroum led off with a double and later scored on a fielding error. The floodgates would open shortly after that.
Cook, who tossed a two-hitter in Deposit’s 9-0 victory over Richfield Springs in last week’s Section 4 Class D title, wasn’t quite as dominant against Chapel Field (4-9). She allowed eight hits, four of which came in a four-run sixth inning that enabled the Lions to avert the shutout, and had only one inning where she did not allow a base-runner.
“She got into a little trouble, especially in the second and third innings, but overall we got out of those, the bats came alive and now we’re headed to (South) Glens Falls,” Swartout said.