Northgate girls lose in playoff

Making it to the WPIAL playoffs after more than two decades was a win in itself for the Northgate girls’ softball team. Their unfortunately brief appearance in the post-season came to an end Wednesday with a 15-0 loss to Chartiers-Houston. Photo by Tom Steiner for The Citizen

By JIM RUMBLE

Nobody expected the Northgate girls’ softball team to win a WPIAL title this season, but after 20-plus years of being on the outside looking in, this year’s participation in the playoffs is something to be proud of.

Having to play a tough Chartiers-Houston team in the first round was a tall order for the Lady Flames, who were defeated 15-0 in a game played at West Allegheny this past Wednesday.

“It’s nice to be here,” said second year coach Rob Abramowicz.“I told the girls it was a pleasure coaching them this year.”

Northgate went down in order in the top of the first inning, but Chartiers-Houston roughed up Flame pitcher Zofia Gallick for six hits, including a home run in the bottom half of the first to take an early 7-0 lead.
Emily Bonidie drew a walk for the Lady Flames with one out in the top of the second, but was forced out at second base on Gallick’s grounder to shortstop. Gallick stole second base but was caught in her attempt at third base to end the threat and the top half of the inning.

The Lady Buccaneers went back to work offensively in the bottom of the second, producing nine hits that led to five runs and a 12-0 lead.

Alley Booth had a two-out base hit to right field in the top of the third but aggressive base running resulted in the third out at second base to end the inning.

Meadow Conley relieved Gallick on the mound in the bottom of the third, where Chartiers-Houston produced three runs to close out their 15-0 victory.

“They [Chartiers-Houston] have a good team and coaching staff,” said Abramowicz.

The Lady Flames are a young team that will lose seniors Bonidie, Cali McWilliams and Keyah Wilkins, but Abramowicz noted that the team has a lot of good athletes that they can build upon.

“There’s a lot of work to do and we’ll work hard in the off season,” said Abramowicz. “We have great pitching and my plan is to win the section next year.”