Madison Pillon

Lady Gens record walk-off 6-5 win over rival Villanova



By Ron Giofu


The General Amherst Lady Gens slo-pitch team picked up their sixth win of the 2018 WECSSAA season last week and did so in dramatic fashion.

The Lady Gens improved to 6-1 with a 6-5 win over the visiting Villanova Wildcats last Tuesday afternoon at Wigle Park. General Amherst had to dig themselves out of a hole as the Wildcats were up 5-1 heading into the bottom of the sixth inning.

After that, the Lady Gens scored twice in the sixth thanks to a Brooklyn Prescott triple and three more in the seventh inning and walked off victorious.

Madison Pillon connects with a pitch during last Tuesday’s WECSAA slo-pitch game between General Amherst and Villanova.

“We fell a little short at the beginning of the game, but we came from behind at the end,” said Payton Laing, one of the Grade 12 players on the Lady Gens’ slo-pitch team.

Laing credited her teammates for plays both in the field and at the plate. She added that it’s nice to beat a rival school like Villanova and that they don’t like to lose to them. The triple by Prescott is what “picked us up” and gave them the momentum they needed for the win.

“It was a great game. We played our hardest,” said Laing. “Our bats came through at the end. Overall, it was a good game by both teams, really.”

The Lady Gens were in a tournament last weekend and the results were unavailable at press time. They are scheduled to play their final regular season game May 29 at home versus Essex, in a make-up game from one that had been rained out earlier in the season.

Lady Gens lose 41-28 in first game of WECSSAA Tier 1 season


By Ron Giofu

The General Amherst Lady Gens hope to bounce back after not winning a WECSSAA Tier 1 basketball game last year and there were positive signs last week.

However, they still were on the short end of a 41-28 defeat to the Kennedy Clippers.

General Amherst’s Taja Holmes goes in for a layup during second half action last week against the Kennedy Clippers. General Amherst lost their season opening game 41-28.

The Lady Gens trailed by one point midway through the second quarter but a spurt late in the quarter by Kennedy gave the Clippers at 31-17 at halftime. General Amherst outscored Kennedy 11-10 in the second half but it wasn’t enough.

“There were some positives and some negatives,” said General Amherst head coach Dom Silvaggio.

One of the negatives was the Lady Gens being too lackadaisical, he said.

“We’ve got to start getting more aggressive,” said Silvaggio.

Madison Pillon of General Amherst reaches back for the basketball during the Lady Gens game against Kennedy last week. The Lady Gens host a pair of games this week.

Silvaggio said they settled too much for outside jump shots instead of looking to go inside.

When Kennedy expanded their lead in the second quarter, Silvaggio said the Lady Gens couldn’t overcome it as the players haven’t developed enough as basketball players to this point.

“Right now, we’re just not there yet,” he said. “It’s good to see we are ahead of where we were last year.”

General Amherst’s Lexi Dodds battles for a rebound in the second quarter of last week’s game against the Kennedy Clippers. A second quarter offensive surge by the Clippers proved to be too much as they ended up defeating General Amherst 41-28.

The Lady Gens are still learning at the defensive end, he added, and have to learn when they can go for steals and when they can’t. Silvaggio said they aren’t running their offense properly all the time either. He believes there is some “angst” among the players holding them back from being as good as they can be.

“There is still a learning curve,” he said. “From the first game at the Western tournament to now, we’ve taken one step forward and two steps back. We need to turn it around and have two steps forward and one step back.”

An interesting side note to the game was that it was Silvaggio versus Silvaggio on the sidelines with Stephen Silvaggio, Dom’s son, coaching the Clippers. They had also coached each other last year. The elder Silvaggio remarked that his son knows what he is going to do during games so it is a challenge to come up with new ways to try and beat his team, but noted that Stephen’s team at Kennedy has a bright future.

Danielle Brindley of General Amherst dribbles along the baseline during fourth quarter action against Kennedy. It was the first game of the WECSSAA Tier 1 senior girls basketball season for the Lady Gens.

“He’s got a good, young team,” said the Amherst coach. “He’s going to be competitive. They are one of the teams we have to beat for the (WECSSAA) ‘AA’ championship.”

The Lady Gens are at home versus Lajeunesse Tuesday at 4 p.m. General Amherst will then host Gens host St. Anne Thursday at 5:30 p.m.