Niswander’s Notes: Baseball and Softball

By John Niswander
Elm Staff Writer

Baseball played a home and home against Swarthmore last week, with the home school winning each game. Swarthmore won the first game on home soil Wednesday by a score of 12-2. WC avenged that ten-run loss when they hosted Friday night, and prevailed 9-8 in extra innings.
“We knew we were better than the 0-3 start we had,” junior pitcher P.J. Mikulus said. “We are just going to have to focus and work hard every day if we want to be where we need to be at the end of conference play,”
The win in extra innings marked the Shoremen’s first Centennial Conference win of the season. Sophomore TC Conrad notched the game-winning run in the bottom of the 10th inning after scoring on a wild pitch.
The win was the Shoremen’s first contest of the year that needed extra innings to be decided. Dating back to March 26, 2016 WC has won five straight games that have gone to extra innings.
Softball contested a non-conference double header on the road last week against Catholic University on Wednesday. The home-standing Cardinals won the first game, 6-3, but the Shorewomen bounced back with a 4-2 win in the second game.
“In the first game we started out flat and did not really pick up our energy until the fifth or sixth inning which it was too late. In the second game we knew we needed to come out early with high energy all around and have a different plate approach and adjust early to the pitcher and umpire,” senior Kerri Estep said.

Charlie Meder
Senior Charlie Meder puts the bat on the ball in front of the loyal fans at Athey Park.

Estep finished 3-5 at the plate, with two runs, three runs batted in, and a walk combined in both games.
“I think for me just being relaxed in the box and not thinking too much about what I needed to do helped me help the team. It is really easy to believe in your teammates, I think that the hard part is actually sometimes believing in yourself. When people start hitting it becomes contagious and the energy just spreads to everyone,” she said.
Sophomore Maddie Bennett contributed at the plate and on the mound for the Shorewomen the second game. Bennett finished with the win on the mound in seven innings pitched to go along with seven strikeouts. Behind the plate, she tallied three hits.
“Personally, I am working on simplifying my swing to make solid contact and get on base. On the mound, I am really working on switching between off speed and faster pitches. Also, getting ahead in the count is important for me,” she said.

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