They may be amateurs, but they proved they can play with the pros.
The City 6 All-Stars — a compilation of the best college softball players at Philadelphia schools — held their own in an exhibition game against the city’s Pro Fastpitch League franchise, the Philadelphia Force. Despite fielding no All-Americans against a team that boasted eight, the All-Stars hung tough before falling, 2-1, to the Force.
Drexel — which hosted the game Friday on Drexel Field — led the way with five representatives on the City 6 roster. The rest of the squad consisted of three players from La Salle, two each from Saint Joseph’s and Temple, and one from the University of the Sciences. Villanova chose not to participate.
Penn’s lone representative was sophomore catcher Alisha Prystowsky, a bona fide one-woman wrecking crew for the Quakers in 2009. After setting freshman records in 2008 for hits, runs and runs batted in, the Montclair, N.J., native earned unanimous first team All-Ivy honors this year after leading her squad in batting average, home runs, doubles, slugging and on-base percentage.
Prystowsky’s prowess was a welcome presence for the City 6 club.
In fact, when she showed up without her uniform because she wrongly assumed that City 6 jerseys would be provided, the Drexel players who were not participating gladly volunteered to find a spare Dragons jersey for Prystowsky to wear. She had no reservations about sporting the garb of the Quakers’ cross-town rival.
“It was a nice touch. It just shows how welcoming they were,” Prystowsky said. “We play them twice a year. They didn’t have to do that; they could’ve left me out there in a T-shirt and shorts.”
It’s a good thing they did, because Prystowsky proved vital to the team’s effort to keep the contest competitive. The All-Stars got off to a slow start at the plate with six consecutive outs to begin the game, and things were just as shaky pitching-wise. City 6 starter and St. Joe’s pitcher Erin Gallagher couldn’t slow down the pros, who loaded the bases before the All-Stars could record a single out.
Then Mother Nature took over. After the Force’s fast start, a one-hour rain delay squashed their momentum and gave the All-Stars a chance to mingle and get to know each other.
“I think we were a little bit shell-shocked in the beginning,” Prystowsky said, “so it was almost nice that we had this nice rain delay. We got to calm down a little bit and come out and see that we’re pretty much in the same spot.”
After the delay, Gallagher got out of the inning, giving up just one run on an RBI groundout by catcher Tory Yamaguchi.
Prystowsky notched the first City 6 hit, a single up the middle to lead off the third inning. Two batters later, La Salle shortstop Ali Shepherd drove her in to tie the game.
Drexel senior pitcher Amanda Shattuck gave up the go-ahead run on a sacrifice fly in the fifth inning, but wasn’t upset about taking the loss.
“If you go 2-1 to a pro team it’s pretty impressive, especially for a team that’s never played together,” she said.Comments powered by Disqus
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