Alex Livanos of MacArthur during game two of the Nassau...

Alex Livanos of MacArthur during game two of the Nassau Class AA softball finals against Bellmore JFK on Sunday. Credit: Dawn McCormick

With its backs against the wall, the fourth-seeded MacArthur softball team did what it needed to do on Sunday to keep its Nassau Class AA championship hopes alive.

MacArthur scored two runs in the bottom of the fifth inning and played nearly-perfect defense behind freshman pitcher Alexandra Livanos to pull off a come-from-behind 2-1 win over second-seeded Bellmore JFK at Farmingdale State.

With two runners in scoring position in the fifth, MacArthur's Savannah Brennan grounded the eighth pitch of her at-bat back to pitcher Lia Fong but pinch runner Alyssa Tinucci was able to race home and score the tying run.

In the ensuing at-bat, Hailey Trapani slapped a comebacker off Fong's glove allowing Gianna Spaventa to score on the infield single, giving MacArthur (9-16) the lead for good.

Trapani’s RBI provided Livanos with added confidence in the circle.

“It gave me a lot more energy," Livanos said, "and it showed me that we’re fighting to win this game."

With her energy boosted, Livanos used a her riseball-changeup mix to keep Bellmore JFK (13-10) off balance. The two-pitch mix allowed her to go into cruise control as Livanos allowed just one hit and two walks in the final four innings, opening the door for the comeback.

The support Livanos got from her teammates allowed her to bow her neck and finish strong.

“With my teammates backing me up — they cheer me on the whole way — it just helped me keep my energy up,” Livanos said.

Livanos’ strong finish started after falling behind 1-0. With the bases loaded and one out in the top of the third, she caught a popup for the second out of the inning. In the next at-bat, Bellmore JFK's Olivia Toto slapped a ball that would have gone through the right side but it hit her teammate running to second, ended the inning.

MacArthur coach Bobby Fehrenbach commended his defense for helping Livanos.

“We need to make all 21 outs in the field,” Fehrenbach said. “[Livanos] has been pitching much better the last two weeks of the season and through the playoffs. She’s going to get hit, but if we make the plays we’re going to be fine, and today we made the plays.”

The decisive Game 3 is scheduled for Tuesday at 7:30 p.m. at Farmingdale State.


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