Ainsley McClure

Although she took the loss, Pennsbury freshman Ainsley McClure pitched another great game with eight strikeouts. (file photo by John Gleeson)

FREELAND » It’s not difficult to explain how the Pennsbury High School softball team’s otherwise outstanding season ended with three straight losses.

The Falcons stopped hitting.

After failing to score a single run in its last two district games, Pennsbury (19-5) was only able to get one Monday afternoon, June 3 and the result was a 2-1 loss in front of a large crowd at the “neutral’’ Drifton Softball Complex in an opening round PIAA Class 6A state tournament game.

The word neutral should be taken lightly because the field was virtually in Hazleton’s backyard.

The Pennsbury run came in the top of the fifth when Karli Haines homered over the right field fence to tie the game at 1-all.

But that was pretty much the extent of the Pennsbury offense against the diminutive 5-4 Aleah Kost, who was never in a lot of trouble as District 2 champion Hazleton raised its outstanding record to 22-1.

Although she took the loss, Pennsbury freshman Ainsley McClure pitched another great game with eight strikeouts.

Hazleton scored in the fourth when Olivia Wolk doubled, Tiana Treon singled and Gianna Gombera lofted a sacrifice fly.

After Pennsbury tied the game, Hazleton came right in the bottom of the fifth with a game-winning sac fly by Wolk. That run was set up a bloop single and double by Kyra Antolick.

Just like that Pennsbury’s fine season was over. In addition to the 19 wins, Pennsbury’s accomplishments this year included its first league championship since 2014 and three wins over rival Neshaminy.

Even better, Pennsbury was young with a strong freshman class including McClure making key contributions.

Pennsbury (19-5) 000 010 0 - 1 Hazleton (22-1) 000 110 x - 2 WP-Kost. LP-McClure. HR-Haines

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