Lilly Fogarty’s word for 2018 was “opportunity.” This year, the freshman’s word is “resiliency.”
Mattituck head coach Kim Gerstung said it’s fitting because she’s started all 10 games, going a complete game in more than half of them, and battled through double-digit walks in most despite boasting a 9-1 record.
“She gave up walks, gave up walks, but she never ever stopped fighting,” the coach said. “She keeps battling.”
In the Tuckers’ 13-3 win over Port Jefferson April 15, Fogarty matched a career-high eight strikeouts over seven innings and career-low five walks, which she’d just reached in Mattituck’s 12-6 win over Pierson April 12. Her eight Ks were also attained in a 9-8 win over Hampton Bays April 8, where she gave up four hits and walked 13.
The right-hander helped her team stay in the game early, striking out four over the first three innings Monday, and picked up three in the sixth, as her team’s bats began heating up. It was fitting for Mattituck’s third annual Strikeout Cancer game. The Tuckers have raised $1,000 each year for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.
“She struck out a bunch, got her changeups down, was hitting her spots … it was great,” battery mate Ashley Perkins said. “Lilly is a little wild, but that comes with experience. She’s young.”
Gerstung said she needs to constantly remind herself that Fogarty is only a freshman, making straight starts at an age where most girls are still playing as fill-ins on the junior varsity team.
“This was by far the best game she’s pitched this season,” Gerstung said. “Last year, her word was ‘opportunity,’ because any opportunity she had she would work take advantage of it. Now, she’s working hard in the offseason with a pitching coach, playing on a travel team to keep that toughness. She’s got huge potential.”
Just one field over Mattituck baseball’s Bryce Grathwohl took a perfect game into the seventh inning before allowing a single with two outs. He finished the game with 13 strikeouts and no walks in a one-hitter to lead Mattituck (5-1 overall, 4-0 in League VIII) to a 11-0 shutout of Pierson. Chris Nicholson and Gianni Lisowy both homered.