Softball Gets Back On Winning Track

Senior+outfielder+prepares+to+throw+to+second+base.

Senior outfielder prepares to throw to second base.

Stephanie Sem

 

Senior outfielder prepares to throw to second base.
Senior outfielder prepares to throw to second base.

 

The Rebels disappointing losses against Norwood and Dedham left them with a record of 4-4.  However, this took a turn for the better after winning games against Needham and Natick.  They were not landslide victories; both games were hard fought battles, resulting in low scores of 1-0 in Walpole’s favor.

The Rebels shut out Needham with three strike outs in the first inning by junior Steph Sem and allowing only one single.  Needham reciprocated with three quick outs as well.  This pattern continued, seeing as the Rebels had yet another inning in the field with three Needham players up at bat and three outs.  The Rebels got their bats going with three singles, but no runs were scored in the second inning.

In the third inning Needham started hitting as well, getting two players on base, but they were unable to score any runs with senior captain, Bridget Nicholson, diving to keep up the Rebels’ momentum and refusing to go down without a fight.  This momentum did not carry over to the Rebels’ batting, where Needham made three quick outs again.

Needham started out strong in the fourth getting a single due to an error.  The next batter got out on a pop up, which was followed by a walk, leaving girls on first and second.  A sacrifice bunt moved these players to second and third with two outs, where they remained after a pop up to make three outs.  The Rebels did not have as good of an inning as Needham had, with only one single and two pop ups.

Needham had the exact same inning as the Rebels’ last up at bat, with one single and two pop ups.  Needham continued to shut out the Rebels with yet another three quick outs.  They started out the sixth inning with a double, but this did not set the stage for the rest of the inning because they then had three pop ups.  One of the outs was an outstanding diving catch made by junior Lauren Regan to keep the game scoreless and strand a player at second.

At this point, the Rebels were fired up after Regan’s amazing play and they started out with a walk.  Senior captain Lauren Bodin stepped up to the plate and crushed the ball to the fence, earning a triple, along with the one and only point of the game.  Needham tried to turn the game around, but the Rebel defense remained strong and ended the game with a 1-0 win.

The Rebels knew that their game against Natick would not be any easier than the Needham game.  Natick only earned one hit in the first inning, which is better than the Rebels, who did not get any hits.  Needham’s next up-at-bat started with a walk, followed by three outs and leaving a girl on first.  The Rebels had a walk and a single, but both of these girls ended up being left on first and second, keeping the game scoreless.

Senior pitcher Marissa Ryan continued to shut out Natick, allowing only one hit in both the third and fourth innings.  The Rebels’ bats seemed to be dead. Natick made three quick outs in the third inning.  This changed in the fourth inning when a batter was walked with one out, followed by singles from senior captain Jess Cochrane, junior Mehron Hoag, and senior Brittany McGraw.  These consecutive hits gave the Rebels to a lead of 1-0.

After this, Natick started swinging more, but the Rebel defense was not giving up.  They made multiple plays to keep Natick from scoring in the fifth, sixth, and seventh innings, and allowed only four hits for the remainder of the game.

These key games advanced the Rebels from 4-4 to 6-4, a huge advantage seeing as they need .500 to make it into tournament and their season is already half over.