Niagara Gazette — PENDLETON — Thursday's ECIC II softball meeting between Williamsville South was expected to be a back-and-forth showdown between familiar foes.
Allison Block and the Spartans had other ideas.
Block pitched a complete-game shutout, striking out 16, and the first four Spartans to step to the plate came around to score, setting the tone for an early-season 11-0 win.
Block struck out the second and third hitters to close out the top of the first, the start of a string of eight straight. Sierra Belkota singled to open the bottom of the innings, followed by base knocks from Kelsi Palistrant, Block, Ashley Owens and Nicole Adams.
Owens picked up two RBIs in the first, while Block and Adams each knocked in a run.
"The last thing I expected was a blowout," Starpoint coach Joe Hill said, "but our pitcher set the tone right off the bat and we swung the bats well early. ...
"With the pitching we have, when you can put four on the board, it's very deflating for the other team knowing (it's) going to have to score at least five runs, which doesn't happen much on Ally."
Starpoint (6-1, 3-0 ECIC II) added a pair of runs in the bottom of the third. With two outs, Aren Schwab singled and Mikenna Pelloth walked. Anna Reinert reached on an error, and No. 9 hitter Tori Purucker drove home Schwab and Pelloth with a single.
Block carried a perfect game through three innings before giving up a leadoff single in the top of the fourth. She gave up a pair of one-out hits in both the fifth and seventh innings, but each time she struck out a pair to get out of a jam.
"Her ball was moving like crazy today," Hill said. "That team has 3-4 college hitters, and she put them in their place."