The softball team spent spring break in Florida, competing in the Gene Cusic Collegiate Classic. The Trailblazers ended the tournament with a record of 2-10 to kick off the season, a disappointing start for the young team.
The team’s first challenge upon returning to campus was a double-header against Bay Path College, which was held on Mar. 25. The day ended with the Trailblazers being swept, losing both games.
The first game of the day was at 1 p.m., with junior Ainsley MacDonald taking the mound for the Trailblazers. MacDonald pitched for six innings, facing 37 batters throughout the game. She also contributed two hits for the effort.
The game was close for the duration of the game, with the teams matching each other run-for-run.
Heading into the bottom of the fifth, MCLA was up 9-6, but the onslaught was coming. In the bottom of the fifth, Bay Path smashed their way into the lead, racking up five runs and giving themselves a two-run bump over the Blazers.
MCLA was unable to answer these runs in the top of the sixth, and went back to the dugout with the score still 11-9.
Bay Path’s bats were now fully awake and they slammed MCLA for another four runs, putting the score at 15-9. MCLA would respond with one run in the top of the sixth, but it was not enough and the game ended with a score of 15-10.
Bay Path only managed to get one more hit than MCLA, ending the game with 11 hits.
The second game was held at 3:30 p.m., and this one proved to be an even greater heartbreaker for the team.
MCLA took the lead early, scoring a run in the very first inning of the game, than adding on another two in the second. Bay Path scored two runs of their own, but MCLA maintained their lead into the bottom of the fifth inning, when Bay Path snuck a run in by the Blazers, tying the game, 3-3.
MCLA was determined not to allow another game to be taken from them, and in the top of the sixth the team hit hard for an additional two runs, planting themselves firmly in the lead.
But Bay Path was relentless, and in the bottom of the sixth, they hti for an additional three runs, sweeping the day. The final score was 6-5, Bay Path.
Ainsley MacDonald again took the mound for MCLA, and lasted over six innings before being relieved. She gave up 14 hits for the game.
On the batting side, junior Kendra Hobbs contributed a home run for the MCLA side. Senior Kaitland Hager led the team in hits, getting on base three times in the game. The team combined for eight hits during the game.
MCLA’s softball team is one of the youngest teams on campus, boasting only two seniors for the entire roster. A full half of the twelve-person roster team is made up of freshmen.
The month of April will be a tough one for this young team, as it will be devoted almost entirely to games in the MASCAC conference. In the current standings, MCLA is second-to-last, standing above only Mass. Maritime in wins and losses.
The softball team will next play on Saturday, Mar. 31, in an afternoon double-header against Mass. Maritime. The first game of the double-header will be at 1 p.m. at the Athletic Complex.
The Mass. Maritime game will be the first MASCAC conference game of the year for the Softball team.