Oyster Bay senior Lilly Galasso remembers last year’s loss to Wheatley in the Nassau Class B softball championship series like it was yesterday.
The Lady Baymen got some level of revenge during the regular season by taking both meetings between the Conference ABC-IV rivals, although last week’s finals rematch proved that much sweeter. Galasso went 5-for-8 with seven RBIs to lead Oyster Bay to 12-4 and 18-7 victories at Mitchel Athletic Complex for its second county title in three years.
“It feels great to redeem ourselves,” Galasso said after the series-clinching win on May 24. “We were all pretty upset with how last year ended,” she added. “We were a little shaky early this season, but we all came together and really found our way. We knew we had the talent.”
Oyster Bay, which has won eight straight after losing 11 of its first 14, scored seven runs in the bottom of the second inning of Game 2 to erase a 6-1 deficit and never trailed thereafter. Junior Katrina Zucconi capped the outburst with a bases-loaded triple.
“Our bats came alive towards the end of the season and our pitchers are doing great work,” second-year coach Victoria Wink said. “We had a tough beginning, but the girls just kept working hard and it’s amazing to turn around the results from last season. It’s my best coaching experience so far.”
The Lady Baymen (11-11) will face Babylon for the Long Island Class B title on Thursday at 6:30 p.m. at Hofstra.
Sophomore pitcher Kristen Aasheim, who’s handled about 90 percent of the workload this spring according to Wink, earned the victory in Game 1 of the series while freshman Skylar McEvoy picked up the win in relief in Game 2. “They have different styles so it’s a nice asset,” Wink said.
Junior catcher Mikaela Cornelious is not only a solid receiver behind the plate but also Oyster Bay’s leadoff hitter. In Game 2, she reached base and scored in each of her first three plate appearances and singled in a run during the game-changing second inning. In the series opener, she was 3-for-5 with two runs scored and one RBI.
The Lady Baymen added four runs in the third, two in the fifth and four more in the sixth of the clincher. Galasso had a three-run single into the gap in the third and scored on a single by McEvoy. The latter also opened the fifth with a triple and scored on a Zucconi single.
In Game 1, Oyster Bay failed to score in the first two innings but managed runs in each of its last five turns at bat to back the pitching of Aasheim, who won for the ninth time this spring including her third against Wheatley.
Galasso drove in Aasheim for the first run, and also again in the fourth inning after Aasheim helped her own cause with a two-run double. Junior Reilly Iles scored in the fourth and fifth, and sophomore Jamie Galasso had the key hit in the sixth, a two-run single that plated Cornelious and Aasheim.