Carroll fans 13 and steady offense scores in every inning to lift Archbishop Spalding to an IAAM A Conference softball three-peat

by Nelson Coffin

Looking at just how dominant No. 5 Archbishop Spalding was in the IAAM A Conference semifinal round by beating Mount de Sales Academy, 21-1, it would have been understandable if a little bit of overconfidence seeped into the Cavaliers’ collective psyche for the championship game against unranked John Carroll.

Archbishop Spalding senior pitcher Amaya Carroll was never in serious trouble in the IAAM A Conference championship game against John Carroll on Tuesday night. The UMBC commit allowed just four hits, walked three and fanned 13 in a 13-2 triumph over the Patriots.

Spalding coach Delaney Bell wasn’t having any of that kind of thinking, so she took a proactive approach to getting the team prepared to meet the Patriots (9-10, 2-6 conference) on Tuesday night at Bachman Park in Glen Burnie.

“We talked to them about that,” Bell said. “We told them that the favorite doesn’t always come out on top. We weren’t the favorite last year — and we won.”

Leaving nothing to chance, the Cavs (17-3, 8-0) scored in every inning while fireballing right-hander Amaya Carroll struck out 13, allowed only four hits and walked three in a 13-2 triumph over John Carroll.

The win gives Spalding three consecutive titles and matches the three crowns Bell won in four years when she was a player for the Cavs.

Carroll, whose fastball topped out at a personal-best 63 miles-per-hour this winter, was bringing the heat against the Patriots, who managed to score single runs in the second (on a groundout by senior infielder Sam Sclafani) and sixth innings (on a single by freshman catcher Ryan Pindell).

They also had a rally cut short when Spalding center fielder Taylor Barchanowicz threw out John Carroll senior pitcher Brianna Botkin, who had singled, trying to reach third base on Sclafani’s single.

“We work hard on defense,” Carroll said. “That was really a critical play — it stopped their momentum.”

The Cavaliers scored in just about every way imaginable, including on productive outs and a booming home run by sophomore right fielder Alyssa Derr.

Derr’s bomb capped a three-run fourth that also boasted doubles by Carroll and Barchanowicz.

Bell joked that she allowed Derr to have an energy drink before the game that was delayed by an hour because it was played on the same field which showcased the 10-inning B Conference championship won by Catholic High.

“We don’t usually let her have one before a game” Bell said with a smile, noting that Derr’s homer might have been the Cavs’ longest shot of the season.

Bell said that one of the team’s goals was to “take one inning at a time” in regard to scoring in every inning.

“We tell them to relax at the plate, because you always have someone hitting behind you” who can also do some damage, she said.

Besides, with Carroll in the circle, there wasn’t much to worry about.

“Amaya is always doing something to get stronger and better,” she said. “She just works really hard.”


John Carroll 010 001 0 — 2 4 1
Spalding 221 341 — 13 11 2

Brianna Botkin and Ryan Pinell; Amaya Carroll Alex Bailey.

2B: John Carroll-Sophie Anderson; Spalding-Ashlyn Bishop, Alex Bailey, Amaya Carroll, Taylor Barchanowicz.