Worthington reaches 100 hits, MAU sweeps 'Canes
BENNINGTON — When Mount Anthony senior Cat Worthington was young, she always dreamed of scoring 1,000 points in basketball.
While she didn't reach that mark on the hardwood, Worthington eclipsed an equally impressive mark on the softball diamond Monday afternoon.
The senior shortstop notched her 100th career hit on a double in the fourth inning as MAU went on to win 18-0 in five innings in the first game of a doubleheader with Hartford.
The hit came with two runners on base and the lined shot to left field drove in Kourtney Saunders and Brianna Murray.
After striking out twice in her three previous at bats, Worthington was happy to finally get that hit.
"I only learned about it two days ago, so coming in I was a little anxious and I didn't start off too hot," Worthington said. "It was good to get it over with. It's an accomplishment to be proud of. I feel like my hard work has come full circle."
After the hit, a break in play was granted so Worthington's teammates could come out and congratulate her.
"I love them so much," said Worthington of her teammates. "I couldn't have done it without them. You have to put nine people on the field. Someone has to go up there before I do."
Patriots coach Jason Dicranian has coached Worthington as she grew up playing the sport and was proud of his star shortstop for reaching that milestone.
"That's a big milestone for anybody to reach in high school," Dicranian said. "Her to reach that was pretty impressive. That's a huge thing in softball. She's been racking the hits up this year. I was happy to be a part of her milestone."
That was Worthington's lone hit in game 1 of the doubleheader, but MAU's lineup had no trouble putting runs on the board all game long.
Right out of the gate, the Patriots put pressure on the Hurricanes.
Brianna Murray led off with a single and stole second. Keana Gauthier walked, and following a Worthington strikeout, Emilie O'Brien came up and doubled both runs in for the lead. Danielle Moscarello doubled on the next at-bat and the onslaught kept on from there.
O'Brien came up again in the inning after MAU batted around, and in her second at-bat of the frame, she hit a three-run home run over the left field fence.
The Patriots put up 11 runs in the first inning and scored in every inning except the third from there.
Dicranian thought that huge start allowed MAU's pitcher, O'Brien, to settle in and be comfortable in the circle.
"It was a good lead. It allowed Emilie to go do her thing and work her pitches," Dicranian said. "It allowed her to move the ball around. It was a good cushion for us to go on from there."
O'Brien was locked in from the first pitch Monday afternoon. The junior brought a perfect game into the fourth inning, but it was broken up by an error at first base and then a single later in the inning.
O'Brien finished allowing just two hits, while striking out five and giving up no walks.
MAU scored two runs in the second, two in the fourth and three in the fifth to pick up the run-rule victory.
Murray went 3-for-5 with a run batted in out of the lead-off spot. O'Brien had the two big first inning hits and drove in five runs in the game. Moscarello and Saunders both went 2-for-4 with a RBI.
The lone Hartford hits came from Cassidy Beisler and Samantha Gibbs, respectively.
The Patriots' bats remained hot in the second game of the day, as MAU dominated once again to the tune of a 17-1 win in five innings.
Saunders got the start in the circle for the second game and the Hurricanes did a good job of producing a run in the first inning. Nevaeh Murphy led off with a single, before advancing to second on a ground out to Saunders. After moving to third base, Hailie Buffum drove in Murphy on a ground out to Worthington at shortstop.
That was all Saunders allowed though. She went the rest of the four innings, allowing just four hits. Hartford had runners in scoring position in the third and fifth, but didn't push a run across either time.
The Patriots gave Saunders plenty of run support early on. After Murray and Gauthier singled to lead off the first, Worthington came up and doubled both girls in for MAU. O'Brien singled next at-bat and then Moscarello hit a three-run home run to put the Patriots up 5-1.
MAU added two more runs in the inning and piled on from there. Three runs in the second and third and four runs in the fourth put the cherry on top of a dominant day for the Patriots.
Moscarello went 3-for-3 in the second game with four RBIs. Gauthier and Worthington both had three hits as well.
O'Brien, Murray and Autumn Hayes all had multi-hit efforts and Kyonna Tobin drove in three runs.
MAU improves to 10-4 with the two wins and plays Fair Haven on the road today, before finishing the regular season at home Wednesday against Rutland.
Adam Aucoin can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org and followed at @AAucoin_Banner on Twitter.
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