Sunny skies and near perfect temperatures set the table for Escalon’s varsity softball girls to host their first game of the 2016 campaign.
They were at home on Friday, Feb. 26 to take on Calaveras and lost a close one, 8-6.
Things started out on a positive note, as Escalon took the lead with five runs in the third, stringing together several hits. Calaveras answered with one in the fourth, four in the fourth, and then took the lead in the sixth. Escalon answered with a run in the sixth, but Calaveras held them off for the non-league win.
Lady Cougar head coach Art Brooks said several players had strong offensive outings in the opener, including Natalie Arnold with a 3-for-4 afternoon with a triple and three runs batted in; Kenzie Duval with two hits, Haylie Corriea with two hits including a double and Hailie Webster with two hits. Laura Brasil and Molly Brown each added a single.
“Chardae Hoskins went five-plus innings, she had eight strikeouts, allowed six hits, she took the loss,” Brooks said. “Molly Brown came on and closed the game out.”
The previous weekend, EHS softball alumni faced off against this year’s varsity girls in what Brooks said they hope to make an annual event.
“We had 17 alumni there and Di (former varsity coach Dianne Teixeira) coached the alumni, they ranged as far back as a 1997 graduate,” explained Brooks. “It was just a pretty neat day, we had a barbecue after, it was fun and competitive, a well-played game, the varsity won 6-3.”
Action on the diamond continues for the varsity Lady Cougars this week, as they were slated to travel to Linden on Tuesday, after The Times went to press and will play in the Rainbow Classic at Rainbow Fields with their first game on Thursday, March 3 at 1 p.m. against Buhach Colony.
Brooks said the JV is scheduled to play in the Rainbow Classic at nearby Rainbow Fields as well and have head coach Malinda Walker returning this season. The JV girls took a solid win over Calaveras via the 10-run rule on Friday and Brooks said they have a very strong freshman class of players joining a returning core of sophomores, a combination that should make them dangerous on the diamond.