By: Tim Birney | | May 6, 2021 | Photo courtesy Brian Fees


ATHENS — Junior Caydence Macik slugged a grand slam and collected seven RBI to lead Athens to a, 13-3, five-inning win over Wellsboro here Thursday afternoon, avenging an early-season NTL Large School softball loss.

Athens coach Mickey Farrell believes there were several factors in play for the Lady Wildcats, who dropped a 5-4 decision at Wellsboro on April 13 for their first loss of the season.

“I think the fact our kids understand more of how important these games are now. They’ve been working their tails off,” he said.

“The difference tonight was we were very aggressive at the plate. (Kerrah) Clymer pitched very well against us over there,” noted Farrell. “I think what helped us tonight was facing (Waverly’s Hali) Jenner, (Tioga’s Kindra) Wessels, and (Towanda’s Maddie) Maynard in the last three games. We’ve seen some really good pitching, and we’ve hammered all of it.

“The confidence level of these girls right now is huge,” added Farrell. “I think that made a big difference, too.”

Wellsboro took a 2-0 lead with a pair of runs in the top of the second inning, but the Lady Wildcats answered in the third inning.

Senior Mallory Mummert led off the third with a single, and ended up on third base after a two-out single by senior Audrey Hatch, and a walk to senior Harley Sullivan to load the bases.

Macik then knocked a 2-1 over the fence to give the Lady Wildcats the lead for good.

“Macik ignited everything for us,” said Farrell. “We loaded the bases, and she popped one out to put us up 4-2, and we steamrolled them from there.”

Athens added five more runs in the fourth inning in a rally that featured an RBI single by Mummert, and a two-run double by Macik to cap the scoring.

After Wellsboro plated a run in the top of the fifth, Athens scored four times in the home half of the stanza to invoke the 10-run “mercy” rule. The fourth run was scored on a bases-loaded walk to Macik.

Sophomore Aliyah Butler earned the win for the Lady Wildcats. She allowed three runs on five hits, while striking out one and walking four in a complete-game, five-inning effort.

Farrell said Athens played well in every facet of the game.

“Butler did a nice job, she pitched pretty well,” he said. “She wasn’t at her best, but she went all five innings for us.

“And, our defense played well behind her,” Farrell added.

Farrell pointed out a pair of defensive plays in the outfield — by Alli Thoman and Macie Coyle.

“We had two outstanding catches by our left fielders,” said Farrell.

“Alli Thoman jumped as high as I’ve her seen her jump, and snagged one out of the air,” he noted. “It was going for a double, maybe a triple, if she doesn’t catch it.”

“A ball was hit over (Macie Coyle’s) head … she took off and made an over-the-shoulder catch,” added Farrell. “She had her glove hand stretched out as far as it would go. That was an ESPN-highlight catch right there, it was a great catch.”

Mummert was 3-for-3 with three runs scored, and one RBI, and Macik homered — her fourth in the last three games — and doubled, scored one run, and drove in seven to lead Athens at the plate, while sophomore Addy Repsher singled twice and scored one run, and Coyle singled twice and scored two runs.

Hatch singled and scored two runs in the win, while Butler added a single, Sullivan scored two runs and drove in one run, and freshman Ashlyn VanFleet and Mackenzie Morgan each scored one run.

With the win, Athens improves to 14-3 on the season, and takes a 2-game lead over Wellsboro in he Large School standings. Wyalusing has been limited to just one divisional game.

“It’s a big win for us in the division,” said Farrell. “Wyalusing hasn’t played much at all — they have a lot of games to make up, but we have a two-game cushion over Wellsboro.

“These kids deserve this,” noted Farrell. “They know a lot of people didn’t have high expectations for them … they’ve worked really hard because they want to win badly.

“They’re having a lot of fun,” he added. “They practice hard, and they play hard; that’s all I can ask.”

Athens is scheduled to host Wyalusing Friday afternoon.


About the Author

Tim Birney Author Bio
Tim Birney

Tim Birney is the founder / owner of River Road Media Group. He was born and raised in the Valley, graduating from Waverly High School in 1984.

Birney earned an Associate's Degree in Journalism from SUNY Morrisville in 1986 and a Bachelor's Degree in Journalism / Public Relations from Utica College of Syracuse University in 1988. He began his newspaper career at The Daily Review in Towanda in 1989, before moving on to The Evening Times in 1995. He spent more than 10 years at the Times, the last four as Managing Editor.

River Road Media Group includes Valley Sports Report (launched Aug. 10, 2009), Tioga County (NY) Sports Report (Aug. 13, 2018), and Northern Tier Sports Report (Aug. 31, 2020). Southern Tier Sports Report is set to launch in 2021.