Wrapping up the preseason campaign with an 8-3 win, the opening contest of the Trans-Valley League season didn’t go as well for Escalon varsity softball girls.
They took a tough 8-7 loss to Ripon in extra innings in the opener.
Prior to that, the win against East Union came on the heels of some solid hitting and pitching, the contest played on Wednesday, March 13.
Bella Strach notched 12 strikeouts against the Lady Lancers and also helped her own cause with a home run. Hailie Webster also belted a home run in the game.
Against Ripon in the TVL opener Friday, March 15 the contest went nine innings.
“We were down, we were up,” said head coach Art Brooks, who noted that he was not able to attend the games this week, which were coached by his daughter and assistant coach, Caitlin Brooks, in his absence.
Strach was again on the mound to start the contest and she had another home run, as did Hannah Boyd. The teams battled back and forth with the host Lady Indians taking a walkoff win in the bottom of the ninth, pushing a run across.
Junior varsity action saw the girls fall 6-2 to East Union and then pummel Ripon in the TVL opener, 13-2.
Against East Union, Soleil Gouzenne and Tulsa Carnes scored the runs. Carnes was on the mound and struck out five. Madison Hagglund had a double, while Ryilee McNulty, Adriana Marrufo and Gouzenne each collected a single.
Friday was a strong start to league play for the JV squad.
“Madison Hagglund had a phenomenal game with 11 strikeouts,” said coach Kristin Beckman. “The girls are starting to really come together and we are making a lot of progress. We are excited to continue the season stronger, together.”
Softball action this week includes a game on the road at Livingston on March 20 and then another game next Wednesday, March 27 at Hilmar. The girls host Modesto Christian on Friday, March 29.