The Pleasant Valley girls' softball team has had a rough start to the 2012 season, as it had lost three of its first four games.
Wednesday the Lady Bears picked up their second consecutive win and may finally have things headed in the right direction.
Diane Klapatch pitched six-and-a-third innings of no-hit ball and helped lead Pleasant Valley to a 6-0 Mountain Valley Conference victory over East Stroudsburg South. The Bears never trailed in the game, as they scored two runs in the first and never looked back.
"Diane pitched very well today," said Pleasant Valley manager Steve Caffrey. "She got ahead of the hitters and was able to throw a lot of her pitches.
"Unfortunately, all of her pitches weren't working as well as I know they can. I'd like to see her change-up work a little better, but she was hitting spots and it was working out for her. She really didn't have any balls hit hard off of her."
Klapatch's only blemishes prior to the seventh inning were walks in the first and third innings along with a hit-batsmen in the third. However, the senior right-hander settled down after the second walk and went on to retire 11 in a row from the end of the third to the beginning of the seventh.
South's Hanna Bergen broke up the no-hitter with one out in the seventh when she singled to right field. It didn't seem to faze Klapatch though, as she struck out the next two batters to end the game.
"I felt pretty good out there," said Klapatch, who finished with nine strikeouts. "It was only my second game pitching this year and I think I finished the game off strong.
"I felt like I was in a groove. I wasn't trying to throw a no-hitter or anything like that. I was just trying to hit my spots and make good pitches."
Klapatch received some early run support thanks to a two-run double from Rachel Sisco in the first. The Bears would add another run an inning later when Rikki Correll scored on a fielding error.
Nicole Kregeloh increased Pleasant Valley's lead in the fourth when she hit a sacrifice fly to center with the bases loaded. Klapatch then helped her own cause when she doubled in two runs one batter later.
Although the Bears scored six runs, they did so on only five hits. Caffrey said afterward that he would like to see some more production out of his lineup.
"There were some batters that came up and were aggressive, but not everybody," said Caffrey. "Then when we were on the bases we made some stupid mistakes. We got picked off third. We left early on a steal attempt. That seems to be a habit of ours right now and it is something we need to correct if we want to win the big games."
Pleasant Valley moves to 3-3 with the win and is looking to get things straightened out before its bigger conference games.
"With our league we kind of build up team-wise," Caffrey said. "We have PM West coming in and then Whitehall, which will be a nice test before we go in to the Stroudsburg and PM East games.
"We are trying to build up to those games right now. Those are the teams that we are going to have to compete with in our league. Hopefully we can get the mistakes out of the way before we get there."
ES South 000 000 0 – 0 1 4
Pleasant Vy 210 300 x – 6 5 0
Parkes and K. Fryer; Klapatch and Shaneberger. W – Klapatch, L – Parkes.