NEWTOWN SQUARE, PA – The term “Cult” tends to have a negative connotation for some… not for Penn Charter’s softball team. This season the four letter word, which is in positive reference to the team’s culture, can be seen written on the knuckles of the entire squad in a bold sharpie marker.
“Something big that we really stress this year is the culture of the team and playing for one another,” said Penn Charter senior Abbey Quinn. “We never really have the goal of winning the Inter-Ac or winning states, we play it one game at a time.”
“[Cult] It’s the glue that keeps our team together,” said Penn Charter junior pitcher Anastasia Lewis.
On a beautiful Tuesday afternoon, Lewis pitched six scoreless innings and struck out nine in route to a 7-1 victory over host Episcopal Academy. A big third inning proved to be the difference maker for the Quakers. Madelynn Solow doubled to left field, which was then followed by a single from Lewis. Then Quinn came up to bat, totally handling the ball to deep right field for an in-the-park homerun to put Penn Charter up 5-0.
“I knew we needed runs. We were only up by one then. She (Emma Tansky) is a really good pitcher on the other team. The first time she struck me out with that change-up. So I was up there, not looking for it, but knowing that it was there and just sat back on it,” said Quinn, who will be playing at West Chester University next season.
The Churchwomen’s lone run of the game came off an eventful play at the plate as sophomore Hailee Moran dove mid-air to tag home for EA. Aforementioned sophomore pitcher Emma Tansky hit a short pop-up, which was bobbled at the mound by Lewis. The hit was just enough to give Moran running and diving room.
“I was honestly thinking ‘just get bat-on-ball and do anything to score a run’,” said Tansky.
“From the point of scoring the run, I saw her (Lewis) bobble the ball and just thought we needed to get the run. I thought that I was going to be out so I just tried to levitate,” said Moran.
Coming into the game both squads were undefeated in Inter-Ac play. Penn Charter, now 7-2 overall (4-0 Inter-Ac), has had noteworthy victories against Springside Chestnut Hill (4-3), Germantown Academy (11-0) and Baldwin (1-0). Episcopal entered the contest with an unblemished 6-0 overall record, now 6-1 (4-1 Inter-Ac). The Churchwomen had previously defeated Notre Dame (9-0), Bonner-Prendergast (17-1) and Springside (3-0).
Moran credited her amazing pitchers to the success her team has been having this season.
“Emma Tansky and Karen (Xiao) they are the foundation of our team,” said Moran. “We definitely have gotten a lot better from last year till now. Our team dynamic has been a lot better.”
While the Quakers have been honoring “Cult” this season, the Churchwomen have been living by their own team motto – “All for one, One for all.”
“We have a great bond, our team is so close and it’s amazing to see,” said Tansky.
Looking Ahead: Episcopal will play away against Baldwin tomorrow at 4PM. Penn Charter will resume league play on Tuesday, April 30 on the road against Springside Chestnut Hill.