Pittsfield softball seniors

It was Senior Day for Pittsfield High softball in a home game against Westfield at the Doyle Complex on Tuesday.

PITTSFIELD — A month ago, Westfield used a late rally to upend Pittsfield in an early-season softball game. Tuesday night, the Generals hoped turnabout would be fair play.

Instead, PHS gave up six runs in the first two innings and was chasing all night. The Generals could not catch up and the Bombers scored a 12-5 win on Senior Night at the Doyle Complex.

Westfield, now 13-1, rebounded from a 3-2 walk-off loss to Wahconah on Monday.

For Pittsfield, the loss ended a seven-game winning streak for the now 10-5 Generals.

It was Westfield pitcher Megan Cichonski who kept the Generals from catching up. She pitched out of jams in three different innings, leaving PHS runners stranded in scoring position.

"She held us in check the first time through the lineup and [part way] the second time," Pittsfield coach Jim Clary said. "We started to come back, but she's a very good pitcher."

"She's solid. She has a very good head," Westfield coach Tyson James said. "She knows how to keep her composure."

It was a night that started with great celebration as six seniors took their final regular-season bows on Senior Night. They took it in a place where they all got their starts playing softball.

"We all grew up here from the start," said Pittsfield catcher Mia Alfonso, who hit a solo home run in the sixth inning and went 2 for 3.

Normally, Pittsfield plays its home games on the diamond behind the high school.

"This is where most of them, especially the seniors, started here when they were eight years old, playing up here on Doyle Field," said Clary. "They wanted to end it, to have their Senior Night here at Doyle Field."

The pregame festivities were the high point because the visitors jumped out to a quick 3-0 lead.

With one out, Pittsfield pitcher Jordynn Bazinet walked Emma Lapoint on four pitches, and Lapoint scored on Kenzie Raymond's double. One out later, Ava Cichonski roped a shot down the right-field line. The triple plated Raymond. Ali LaPanne followed with a single to put the Bombers up 3-0.

Pittsfield answered with a run in the home first. Amanda Pou led off with a single, went to second on a ground out by Maddy Creamer and scored on a two-out single by Bazinet. That made it 3-1.

A quick and quiet inning might have helped Pittsfield. Instead, Westfield scored three runs on four hits and one of four errors made by the Generals in the game. When Raymond scored on a single by Allie Rehor, it was 6-1. That proved to be a hill too tall for the Generals to get over.

Pittsfield had a couple of big displays of power, as Sophia Santos and Alfonso both homered. Santos' drive cleared the fence in right-center leading off the fourth inning, and Alfonso's homer left the park in center field leading off the sixth.

"Hey, they can hit solo home runs," the Westfield coach said. "I'm fine with that. As long as they don't hit three or four-run homers."

The wheels came off for Pittsfield in the top of the seventh, as the Generals gave up five runs on two hits and three errors.

In the Pittsfield seventh, Pou hit a one-out single to center. Creamer then hit a sinking liner to left, but Tristan Macznik made a great running catch and threw a strike to LaPanne at first to double Pou up and end the game.

"We were planning on making a comeback," said Clary. "Our defense kind of faltered a bit toward the end. We gave them too many extra outs."

This is the last time these Valley League rivals will see each other. Pittsfield will play in the PVIAC Class B Western Massachusetts while Westfield is in Class A. The Generals are currently the No. 12 team in the MIAA Division III Power Rankings, while Westfield is No. 5 in Division II.

The Generals have two more games this week, hosting Agawam on Thursday and traveling to Pine Grove Park for a Friday night date with Wahconah.

Westfield 330 001 5 — 12 14 0
Pittsfield 100 211 0 — 5 9 4
Megan Cichonski and Kenzie Raymond. Jordynn Bazinet 5, Amanda Pou 2 and Mia Alfonso. W — M. Cichonski. L — Bazinet. 2B — W: Emma Lapoint. P: Pou. 3B — W: Ava Chiconski. HR — P: Sophia Santos, Alfonso.

Howard Herman can be reached at  hherman@berkshireeagle.com or 413-496-6253. 


Howard Herman is a sports columnist at The Berkshire Eagle. The dean of full-time sportswriters in Western Mass., he has been with the Eagle since 1988, and is a member of the New England Baseball and Basketball Hall of Fame.