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Oyster Bay falls to Center Moriches in LIC

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Oyster Bay ran into a buzzsaw pitcher and endured some uncharacteristic defensive struggles in Saturday’s Long Island Class B softball championship game at Moriches Sports Complex.

The result was a 10-0 defeat to Center Moriches, which blew the game open early with five runs in the bottom of the first inning. Pitcher Erin Cunningham struck out eight of the first 10 batters she faced and finished with 13 Ks, two walks and a three-hit shutout. Leah Franchi homered, doubled and singled and drove in three runs for the Suffolk County champs, who last captured a L.I. title in 2016.

The Lady Baymen, who defeated Wheatley one week earlier to capture their second Nassau County title in four seasons, finished 7-14. “It was a great experience for our young team to play on a big stage,” Oyster Bay coach Victoria Wink said. “I don’t know if it was jitters or what, but we didn’t play a strong defensive game like we usually do.”

More than half of the runs against Oyster Bay senior pitcher Skylar McEvoy were unearned. “I thought Skylar did an exceptional job,” Wink said. “She battled and got some big-time hitters to ground out or fly out.”

Center Moriches batted around in the bottom of the first and added a run in the third and four more in the fourth, highlighted by a two-run homer from Franchi. Kaylie Roberts added three hits for the Red Devils.

“I’m excited about what we’re bringing back next season,” Wink said.