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Huge 5th Inning Lifts Softball, Thomas Makes History for Girls Lax

May 24, 2024

• Needham’s Softball and Girls Lacrosse teams both topped Braintree.

In the last week of the 2024 Spring regular season, two Rockets teams came back to beat the Braintree Wamps. First it was Monday, May 20th, as Softball won 10-4, then the following day as Girls Lacrosse won 12-7. And both did it in big fashion, with one Girls Lacrosse player making history.

Needham Softball fell behind 3-0 early, tied the score, then fell behind again 4-3. That was until the fifth inning, when the Rockets had a huge inning at the new McLeod Field, scoring seven runs.

With the bases loaded, Sarah Deroian hit a blooper over the Braintree Shortstop, bringing home the tying run. Olivia Kirschner followed that up with an RBI liner into left field to put Needham on top. After that it was Morgan Kraft, with an RBI single to left, making it 6-4.

Kaitlyn Cheng then blew the game open with a towering double to deep left, scoring all three base runners. The capper of the inning was a single by Maddie Navales that brought Cheng home, to complete the seven run inning.

The win lifted Needham to a record of 11-6, though they would fall in their regular season finale on Wednesday, May 22nd, 6-5 at Walpole, to finish the regular season 11-7.

Girls Lacrosse also trailed the Wamps in the early going, then 6-5 in the second quarter, until Lily Schmalz tied it, with her second goal of the game. Then Sammy Bonasia gave the Rockets their first lead of the game. Bonasia and Sophia Meeds would each score hat tricks for the Rockets.

But the biggest play of the game came later on, when Needham Senior Goalie Ellie Thomas made her 500th career save. Thomas will be heading to the University of New Hampshire next year.

Needham improved to 10-6 on the season, though also lost to Walpole in their regular season finale, 17-6 on Thursday, May 23rd.

Sports Anchor Ben Gilman has highlights from both games here:

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The highlights from this story ran as part of the Needham Channel News, a weekly newscast airing on The Needham Channel every Thursday at 7:30pm. The Needham Channel News can be found on the Community Channel: Comcast 9, Astound 15 and Verizon 29. Most Thursdays it also can be viewed on our HD Channel on Verizon 2129, Astound 613 and streaming on this site.