Amanda Sinodinos got things righted at the plate with a simple switch.
The Bishop Kearney senior and natural lefty had batted right-handed all her life, but carried a slump from last year into the early part of this season. To get herself out of it, she switched around to hit lefty and homered in a scrimmage at St. Joseph by the Sea. The hitting woes came back over the last five games and Sinodinos decided it was time to try things righty again.
“She came today and said, ‘Coach I’m going to get up righty. Is it OK?’ ” Tigers coach Nick Trani said. “I said, ‘Go ahead. Get up righty. Maybe it will work.”
Sindodinos left little doubt of its effectiveness.
She doubled twice and drove in four runs in an 11-run bottom of the first inning. It propelled Kearney to a 17-5 five-inning run-rule win on May 12 against rival Fontbonne Hall in the first round of the CHSAA Brooklyn/Queens softball playoffs at Our Lady of Grace.
She also toed the rubber in the circle and allowed three earned runs on seven hits.
“Turning around really helped, the swing was more level,” Sinodinos said.
Sam Simon, who was 3-for-4 with two RBIs and two runs scored, got the inning started with a double down the left-field line off Fontbonne starter Nicolette Trapani, who had a 2-0 lead thanks to a Jenna Nixon single to the gap in right center.
Alyssa McDonald reached on a bunt single with no one covering first and Kristen Ferrigno loaded the bases with a walk. Sinodinos plated two with a shot off the top of the left field fence and Nicole Tobin followed with an RBI-double to make it 3-2.
“I felt like losing to them yesterday, we needed like revenge,” Simon said. “The first inning just proved everything.”
Maria Serrantino quickly came on in relief. A run scored on an error, Francesca Ingargiola, who had three RBIs, drove in the next with a single. Stephanie Bramante followed with a bunt single to keep things going and Simon added a two-run double.
Sinodino got up with bases loaded again and nearly hit a grand slam, but the ball curved just around the foul poll. She settled for an another two-RBI double to left before Tobin, who drove in two, added a run-scoring single to make it 10-2. Casey Mitchell scored twice and drove in two.
“Amanda is a good player,” Fontbonne coach Frank Marinello said. “I’ve never seen her in a slump. Maybe she was in a slump against somebody else, not against us.”
The Bonnies, who had runner caught stealing second by Kearney catcher Amanda DiLeo in the second, got two runs back in the third thanks to an RBI-single from Maria Randazzo and an error to make it 12-4. Serrantino was 3-for-3 with a double and two runs scored and Nixon collected two hits, but they couldn’t keep Kearney off the board.
The Tigers scored one in the second, two in the third and three in the fourth after managing just four hits.