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Hawks capitalize on errors for win

Wendy Alexander/The Madera Tribune
Liberty’s Camile Vestal got a hit in Tuesday’s victory over Sierra to help the Hawks stay atop the North Sequoia League standings.


The Liberty Hawks softball team continue its strong North Sequoia League campaign with a 6-2 league victory over the Sierra-Tollhouse Chieftains at home on Tuesday.


“I have a great group of kids,” Liberty head coach Steve Uyeda said. “They always play to the best of their abilities and they listen well. They did a good job.”


Although the Lady Hawks’ bats awoke early, the defensive miscues by the Chieftains handed the Hawks a victory. Both Sierra’s infield and outfield had trouble with with five errors.


Liberty sophomore Sarah Shevenell was dominant on the mound. Her ability to locate pitches around the strike zone made the Chieftains uncomfortable all afternoon. She pitched five strong innings, allowing a run with multiple strikeouts, including two in the first inning.


“She’s only a sophomore, but she is getting better and better. She battled and gave us a good effort,” Uyeda said. “She is starting to realize her potential and I think she’s going to be a really good player for us.”


While Shevenell dominated on the mound, her teammates around the diamond also chipped in. Kaylan May doubler in the first inning to get the Hawks started and they never looked back.


Liberty got on the board after May hit a double down the left field line. Camile Vestal followed with a short flare to right field for a single to drive in May with the first run of the game.


The Hawks’ offense was on display in the first inning, but in the second, center fielder Brianna Burgess loaded up and fired a ball into home plate to cut down a runner to keep a Sierra run off the board. The Chieftains knocked the ball through the middle, but Burgess tracked the ball and runner before sending an accurate throw to the catcher for the out.


The action picked up in the bottom of the fourth inning after the error-plagued Chieftains failed to record an out.


Calissa Haney sent a ball into left field for a two-run single, pushing the lead 3-0.


Liberty just continued to find holes in the Chieftains’ defense.


Shelby Ford sent a deep shot to the right field wall, allowing Haney to score, to push the lead 4-0. Karlie Sphar then singled into center field, allowing Ford to score.


It was just one of those days for the Chieftains. Another error in the bottom of the fifth inning led to another Liberty run. The third baseman threw too low to first base, forcing the ball away.


Just as the game was out of reach, the Chieftains scored two runs of their own, but couldn’t climb out of their early hole.