If Mansur had her way, she wouldn't have been the starter with so much at stake.
"Par-Troy East hits the ball a lot," Mansur said. "I threw only one or two strikes the whole warmup. I told my dad that maybe I shouldn't pitch. I was very, very nervous."
Mansur's father, Altan, who manages PTW, encouraged Izzy, telling her to "be mad at the ball."
And, the younger Mansur was, overcoming first-inning control problems to pitch a two-hitter and help Par-Troy West repeat as District 1 champion with an 8-5 win over Par-Troy East on Friday, July 6 at Park Road Field.
A three-run fourth inning, highlighted by RBI singles by Emily Moutis and Amanda Lalicata, was key for PTW, giving it a 6-4 lead. Moutis' RBI base hit tied the score, 4-4. Moutis scored on a wild pitch for 5-4 before Lalicata drove in the sixth run with a single up the middle.
"I am so happy. There's not a word to describe this," Altan Mansur said. "The girls played together and believed in each other. They picked each other up."
Izzy Mansur came through after a rocky beginning. She walked three and allowed a hit when PTE gained a 2-0 lead in the top of the first inning. Beyond that, she was excellent, as was the defense paced by slick-fielding shortstop Jaclyn Carifi. For her efforts, Mansur was awarded a gameball along with Moutis.
"In the yard, Izzy will throw a few over my head," Altan Mansur said. "Some pitches will take a few bounces. She's able to adjust. I wanted her to be aggressive. It's a lot different when Izzy pitches instead of Jaclyn. She's slower so Par-Troy East had to change its bat speed."
Rob Pisillo, PTE's manager, was impressed by Mansur. He and his players were unsure what to expect. The only PTE players to reach Mansur for hits were Lauren Feola and Carly Homler.
"I couldn't emphasize enough that we'd need a good amount of runs to win," Pisillo said. "We never got it going offensively. (Mansur) threw strikes. We didn't know if she would. When she did, we couldn't figure her out."
A pair of errors enabled PTE to go ahead 4-2 in the top of the second inning. Mansur (7 strikeouts, 5 walks) and the "D" then retired seven consecutive PTE batters.
Even when not pitching, Carifi made an impact. She had three hits and scored three runs, the first one with a steal of home, as PTW's leadoff batter.
Lalicata, PTW's third baseman, had two hits in the No. 2 slot. Moutis finished with three RBIs, stroking a fourth-inning single and getting a two-run base hit to right field in the fifth inning.
"Winning was really exciting," Lalicata said. "I was a little nervous when I was fielding. I'm OK when I'm hitting. I thought I could do it."
Moutis, eighth in the order, grounded out in her initial at-bat but made good contact as the game progressed.
"I thought we'd need a lot of runs because our two teams are pretty equal," Moutis said. "They have good pitchers. I didn't want to strike out at the end. I had to get a hit. I'm so proud of this team."
PTW's Tara Tafro had a strong game, handling the throws to first base.
"I think our fielding was really good," Tafro said. "I was worried Par-Troy East would get a lot of hits."
Next up for PTW is the section. Last season, PTW went all the way to the state tournament. Mansur deemed it "a fantastic journey."
As for PTE, the future looks bright. Half of its players will return next summer.
"The girls never quit. They rally and support one another," Pisillo said. "We're disappointed but this will be a learning experience."