Coach's Corner #2 - March 5
Timberwolves open with split
Maybe it was the Sun. Maybe it was batting first. Maybe it was no more first-day jitters.
Likely, it was the latter.
BMCC lost a pair of Saturday (March 3) games to open the preseason tournament in Columbia Playfields in Richland, Wash. The T-Wolves lost 9-4 to Clark (Vancouver, Wash.) and 6-4 to Everett (Wash).
We gave up 18 base on balls and committed five errors. The “silver lining” is that we got a lot of fielding opportunities. That’s one of the quickest ways to get rid of jitters.
Sunday, however, was a different story. We beat Lower Columbia (Longview, Wash.) 6-3 and Chemeketa, Salem), 9-1.
Our pitchers gave up six walks and scattered seven hits in the two games. Meanwhile, the defense committed three errors and the bats exploded for 20 base hits.
Freshman shortstop Cheyenne Friend and sophomore Jordan Bennett carried the biggest sticks as Bennett had six hits in three games and Friend had eight hits in four games, including six hits and five runs batted in on Sunday (March 4).
There wasn’t a cheap hit in the bunch.
Bennett also picked up the pitching win over Lower Columbia.
Sophomore Megan Alexander limited Chemeketa to three singles and walked none. She had plenty of defensive support, especially from second baseman Randi Kostner (freshman), who lives up to her “Gumby” nickname. She just seems to stretch and stretch and stretch when making some highlight-flim defensive plays. The Sutherlin native also had four hits and scored 7 runs in the four games.
Sophomore catcher Kendal Weber had four hits on the weekend and caught all innings in the four games.
Corner freshmen Kerica (prononced CARISSA) and Stephanie Figueroa solidified the defense.
During the weekend, the T-Wolves used a variety of outfield combinations as Paige Aldred, Cassie Hernandez, Jess Morton, Kaley Lyles, Chyenne Carter and new addition Page Woodward logged innings in the outfield.
Woodward is an interesting addition to the team. We invited her to run for us in practice. She and baseballer Matt Doyle showed up to assist us in working on situationals. Didn’t take long to see her athleticism and her natural speed. The next day, she was asked to play and it took her about 20 minutes to say yes. She called her soon-to-be volleyball coach in Montana to see if she could. He said go for it, just keep up the volleyball.
Woodward’s three days of practice was so impressive, she started game one in the tournament. She hadn’t played softball in four years, but it’s obvious she HAS played.
There were a lot of positives the first weekend: Morton, who admittedly has been struggling with her bunting, dropped down a perfect sacrifice bunt against LCC, Carter drove in a run with a line shot passed the LCC first baseman and also had an important sac bunt.
There’s more. Aldred had a couple of base hits and looks like the centerfielder we’re after. Hernandez had a single and double. Piper Carstens came through in a timely moment and got called on to pinch run.
Everyone contributed. I can keep going ... it was fun to watch. But I’m trying to keep this around 500 words.