Despite a strong start and defensive performance, the Eastside Eagles fell 4-0 at home to the Monticello Hurricanes in their first softball game of the season.
“You always want to start out with a win in the first game of the season, especially starting out at home, but defensively, I was proud of the girls,” said Eastside Coach Heather Wood after the game. “We got a little shaky towards the end, but I felt like we came out with high intensity. However, we just couldn’t come through at the plate.”
Both teams went scoreless through the first five innings until a three-run sixth sent the Hurricanes into the lead, 3-0. The Eagles notched four hits throughout, but failed to capitalize and turn them into points.
“We’ve got to a better job of being smarter at the plate and also making the adjustments and just being smarter hitters when we’re up to bat,” Wood said.
Eastside starting pitcher Lauren Beshears had an exciting game, coming away with seven strikeouts in the matchup. Her pitching was key in stopping a few big plays, including one that ended the Hurricanes’ first big run in the top of the fourth when they recorded their first three hits in the game.
Unfortunately, momentum still swung in Monticello’s favor, as the team had five more hits over the next three innings, as well as one more run in the top of the seventh for the 4-0 victory.
“I thought Lauren did a good job,” Wood said. “I thought she kept us in the game. Unfortunately, our bats just weren’t able to come through for her.”
Being down 4-0 at the bottom of the seventh proved to be a confidence killer for the Eagles, and Wood took a timeout to address her team.
“I told them that they need to give me the full seventh inning,” Wood said of the timeout. “I felt like we got a little sloppy at the end, so I really tried to reiterate that I need the full seven innings while you’re out here, even when things aren’t going our way. It felt like started getting down once they started getting some runs on us.”
Eastside seniors Ally Allgood and Molly Moon, along with freshmen Kailey Rusk and Alysee Dobbs, all had hits in the game.
The Eagles will resume action on Tuesday when they travel to Woodward Academy for their first Region 4-AAAA game of the season. The War Eagles are currently 0-2 in their season.
“I think [Thursday’s game is] something to build on,” Wood said. “This is our first game of the season, so we get a lot of nerves out. We get to see a lot of the things that we need to improve on. I just want to make sure we make those adjustments before we play our first region game next week.”