CASTLETON - The Enosburg Hornets (No. 4) took on the top seed Lyndon Vikings in the D2 title game at Castleton University on Friday afternoon, unfurling their flag for the anthem before taking the field.
Erin Diette put the ball in play in the top of the first, but Enosburg couldn't generate an early lead, and Dana Elkins stepped into the circle to face the first Viking batters. Elkins induced a flyout to Brianna Demag at second, and a quick-handed Erin Diette turned a double play to end the inning and the scoring threat.
In the bottom of the second, Lovelette caught a pop-up at third for the first out; the second went to Sophie Burns in center, and Emma Keelty corralled a popup behind the plate to end the inning.
Elkins struck out two Vikings in the bottom of the third, and Lovelette snagged a sharply hit ball at third to end the inning and send the Hornets to the top of the fourth.
Erin Diette sent a line drive to center for a single in the top of the fourth, but a double play ended Enosburg's scoring chance.
Brianna Demag snagged a grounder at second, throwing to Megan Severance at first for the first out in the bottom of the fourth. A Viking runner reached base in the next at-bat, but Keelty's snipe from behind the plate resulted in the second out for Enosburg. A deep left-field double extended the inning for Lyndon, but Hornet defenders came up big; Severance earned the final out for the Hornets, making a catch on a hard-hit line drive down the line.
The Vikings breached Enosburg's defense in the bottom of the fifth, plating six runs.
In the top of the sixth, the Hornets rallied as Destiny Benware earned a walk, stole second and third, and scored on Keelty's single. Erin Diette kept the Hornets hopes alive, driving a ball to the wall for an RBI. Lovelette hit an infield single, scoring Diette and slicing the Hornets' deficit in half.
Elkins struck out Lyndon's first batter in the bottom of the sixth, but the Vikings plated three runs before Enosburg ended the half-inning. The Vikings went on to win the title by a score of 9-3.
"This team was really easy to coach. They're so much fun, and they were together--14, 16, or 18 deep--just really easy to play with every day. It was like we were out on the playground every day...and then we end up here!" said Hornet coach Randall Wells. "This is icing on the cake; it's an amazing group of kids."
Dana Elkins pitched a complete game for the hornets allowing 9 runs on 9 hits (3 earned), and striking out 3.
Erin Diette had 2 hits for Enosburg, and Emma Keelty had one.