High schools: Agawam slugs past Frontier softball in season opener (PHOTOS)

Frontier’s Skyler Steele (10) heads home to score a run against Agawam during the Redhawks’ season opener on Friday at Zabek Field in South Deerfield.

Frontier’s Skyler Steele (10) heads home to score a run against Agawam during the Redhawks’ season opener on Friday at Zabek Field in South Deerfield. STAFF PHOTO/JEFF LAJOIE

Frontier pitcher Raine Wonsey (21) makes a throw to first base against Agawam during the Redhawks’ season opener on Friday at Zabek Field in South Deerfield.

Frontier pitcher Raine Wonsey (21) makes a throw to first base against Agawam during the Redhawks’ season opener on Friday at Zabek Field in South Deerfield. STAFF PHOTO/JEFF LAJOIE

Frontier’s Skyler Steele (10) makes a catch at shortstop against Agawam during the Redhawks’ season opener on Friday at Zabek Field in South Deerfield.

Frontier’s Skyler Steele (10) makes a catch at shortstop against Agawam during the Redhawks’ season opener on Friday at Zabek Field in South Deerfield. STAFF PHOTO/JEFF LAJOIE

Frontier first baseman Sophia Pinardi (15) guards the bag while Agawam’s Kiley Ryan (4) takes a secondary lead during the Redhawks’ season opener on Friday at Zabek Field in South Deerfield.

Frontier first baseman Sophia Pinardi (15) guards the bag while Agawam’s Kiley Ryan (4) takes a secondary lead during the Redhawks’ season opener on Friday at Zabek Field in South Deerfield. STAFF PHOTO/JEFF LAJOIE

Frontier right fielder Adelaide Ehle gets the ball back in after an Agawam hit during the Redhawks’ season opener on Friday at Zabek Field in South Deerfield.

Frontier right fielder Adelaide Ehle gets the ball back in after an Agawam hit during the Redhawks’ season opener on Friday at Zabek Field in South Deerfield. STAFF PHOTO/JEFF LAJOIE

Frontier’s Whitney Campbell (2) takes a swing against Agawam during the Redhawks’ season opener on Friday at Zabek Field in South Deerfield.

Frontier’s Whitney Campbell (2) takes a swing against Agawam during the Redhawks’ season opener on Friday at Zabek Field in South Deerfield. STAFF PHOTO/JEFF LAJOIE

Frontier’s Raine Wonsey (21) delivers a pitch against Agawam during the Redhawks’ season opener on Friday at Zabek Field in South Deerfield.

Frontier’s Raine Wonsey (21) delivers a pitch against Agawam during the Redhawks’ season opener on Friday at Zabek Field in South Deerfield. STAFF PHOTO/JEFF LAJOIE

Frontier’s Ashley Taylor (6) puts the ball in play against Agawam during the Redhawks’ season opener on Friday at Zabek Field in South Deerfield.

Frontier’s Ashley Taylor (6) puts the ball in play against Agawam during the Redhawks’ season opener on Friday at Zabek Field in South Deerfield. STAFF PHOTO/JEFF LAJOIE

Frontier’s Adelaide Ehle (16) runs to first base after making contact against Agawam during the Redhawks’ season opener on Friday at Zabek Field in South Deerfield.

Frontier’s Adelaide Ehle (16) runs to first base after making contact against Agawam during the Redhawks’ season opener on Friday at Zabek Field in South Deerfield. STAFF PHOTO/JEFF LAJOIE

By THOMAS JOHNSTON

Staff Writer

Published: 03-29-2024 9:00 PM

SOUTH DEERFIELD — Runs came early and often in the Frontier softball team’s season opener against Agawam on Friday. 

The visiting Brownies opened the game with four runs in the top of the first but the Redhawks responded by putting three runs on the board in the bottom of the frame.

Agawam tacked on two in the third and two in the fourth before exploding for six runs in the sixth. Frontier, meanwhile, tallied a run in the fourth and the fifth, but Agawam pitcher Avery Gordon was able to contain a tough Redhawk lineup, with the Brownies running away with a 16-5 independent victory at Zabek Field. 

“We made some early season mistakes,” Frontier coach Gary Deane said. “We’re going to work on them immediately tomorrow. They’re a great group of kids. We didn't graduate anyone from last year. We’re no longer the young team full of eighth and ninth graders. I can no longer say we made those errors because of inexperience.” 

One positive for the Redhawks was the performance by seventh grader Raine Wonsey. Wonsey got the start in the circle, tossed four innings and surrendered five hits. At the plate, she had a sacrifice fly and a double off the fence. 

“You’re going to be hearing about her for the next six years,” Deane said. “She hit the fence with a double, too. She got up to 100 pitches today. I thought she was awesome. She was ready and prepped for that. Luckily we have girls we can go to in the bullpen which is nice.”  

Agawam was able to get after Wonsey in her first inning pitching at the varsity level, as Sammie Eisenbeiser knocked an RBI double, Gordon and Amber Bates hit RBI singles while Eisenbeiser scored on a wild pitch to give the Brownies an early 4-0 lead. 

Frontier answered quickly. Ashley Taylor hit a single on the first pitch she saw, Delaney Fifield doubled on the first pitch she saw before Skyler Steele singled on the first pitch she saw, scoring Taylor and giving the Redhawks three hits on the first three pitches of the inning.

Article continues after...

Yesterday's Most Read Articles

Ryan Zaveral, Shane MacDowell cross finish line first in River Rat Race
Families fume at Orange Elementary School Committee over LPN hire
Dennis Carey marks 40 years participating in River Rat Race
Historical society presents history of Nichewaug
After six decades, River Rat Race paddles on
58th Athol River Rat Race results

Sophia Pinardi grounded out to score Fifield and Olivia Machon launched a single that brought Steele in, cutting the lead to 4-3 after one. 

Agawam added two runs in the third after an error with the bases loaded allowed two runs to cross. In the top of the fourth, Payton Melanson scored on a wild pitch before Alexina Lentes hit a sac fly that gave the Brownies an 8-3 lead. 

Wonsey’s sac fly came in the fourth to score Gabrielle Adams, and in the bottom of the fifth, Fifield got on with a single and scored on a wild pitch to cut the lead to 8-5 going into the sixth. 

Agawam put the game out of reach in the sixth. Eisenbeiser hit an RBI single and later scampered home on a double steal, Gordon cracked an RBI double and later scored on a fielder’s choice, Kiley Ryan hit an RBI single and later scored on an error, with the Brownies leading 14-5 going into the bottom of the sixth. 

Lentes crushed a two-run homer in the seventh to seal the win for Agawam. 

“We had times where we got ahead of ourselves at the plate,” Deane said. “The first three pitches we had good, hard hits. We were just swinging. By the fourth inning [Gordon] was at 30 pitches. We need to learn to work the count and be patient. She was a good pitcher. We’ll learn from it. It’s just game one.” 

Wonsey struck out four while Taylor added two strikeouts for Frontier. 

Granby 21, Mahar 9 (5) — Quinn Cook hit a grand slam while Grace Roy knocked three triples, leading the Rams to an independent victory over the Senators on Friday in Granby. 

Mahar led 3-1 after one but Granby scored two in the second, three in the third, 10 in the fourth and six in the fifth to close out the win in five innings.

Boys volleyball

Sci Tech 3, Frontier 0 — Jack Carey put down eight kills and made seven digs for the Redhawks in a 25-20, 25-20, 25-17 loss to Sci-Tech at Goodnow Gymnasium on Friday. 

Will Reading recorded three kills, Tavo Vincent-Warner tallied two kills and five assists while Evan Maio made four digs for Frontier. 

Girls tennis

Palmer 5, Frontier 0 — The Redhawks were unable to pick up a win over the Panthers, falling 5-0 in South Deerfield on Friday. 

Hashini Ratnatunge fell 6-2, 6-3 in No. 1 singles, Makalya Craig dropped a 6-1, 6-1 decision in No. 2 singles while Ella Sibley  fell 6-0, 6-3 in No. 3 singles. 

At No. 1 doubles, Thanushi Ratnatunge and Aylen Shaw lost a 6-2, 6-1 match while in No. 2 doubles, Araceli McCoy and Esther Ehle fell 6-0, 6-2.