THORNWOOD, N.Y. – Whether it was with the bat, her legs or her glove Saturday, Daniella Chiodi was a major factor for Eastchester.
The shortstop and No. 1 batter in Eastchester’s lineup had three hits, scored three runs and was a standout defensively in a 9-0 win over Harrison in the District 20 Little League Softball Major’s winner’s bracket final at Sherman Park.
Eastchester advances to the final for the second consecutive year and will await either Harrison or Ardsley. Harrison and Ardsley meet in the loser’s bracket final at 5:45 p.m. Monday at Gedney Field in White Plains. The winner faces Eastchester at 5:45 p.m. Wednesday at McDowell Field in Ardsley.
Cassie McGrath tossed a one-hitter and struck out 13, including six in a row over the last two innings. However, it was Chiodi who preserved the shutout with a fine defensive play in the first inning. Harrison had runners on second and third with no outs when she fielded a ground ball and threw the baserunner out at home.
“Normally, I would check the runner and throw to first, but I heard the coach tell her to go and I also saw her running out of the corner of my eye,” said Chiodi, nicknamed “Speedy” by Eastchester manager Chris Tiso.
Chiodi walked and came around to score in the first inning on a wild pitch. She singled to center in the third and scampered home on a Sophia Tiso double. In the fourth, Chiodi singled in Tori Santamauro, who led off the inning with a perfectly executed bunt base hit. Chiodi capped her day with a single and scored on a Tiso single in the sixth.
“My dad always tells me to lead with my left hand,” said Chiodi of her hitting approach.
Harrison’s only hit came from its first batter of the game as Gina Nuvoloni lined a single to left field.
“Cassie was really good and if it wasn’t for her we wouldn’t be this far,” Chiodi said.
Eastchester 102 123 – 6 11 0
Harrison 000 000 – 0 1 2
RBI – Sophia Tiso 2, Daniella Chiodi, Cassie McGrath, Alyson Schultz, Lexi Schachinger. 2B – E: Sophia Tiso, Amanda Graham. WP – Cassie McGrath. LP – Sydney Braiotta.