Softball falls to Otterbein and DeSales on second day of season-opening Florida trip

Senior Andrea Russo drove in a run against DeSales on Monday, March 4, 2019. (File photo by Phyllis Graber Jensen/Bates College)

CLERMONT, Fla. -- The Bates softball team struggled offensively on Monday, dropping a pair of games to Otterbein and DeSales by scores of 4-1 and 9-1 respectively. 

The Bobcats (0-4) look to get on the winning track Tuesday morning when they take on Trine and John Carroll. 

Otterbein 4, Bates 1

The Otterbein Cardinals scored three times in the fifth inning to defeat the Bobcats by a score of 4-1 Monday morning.

Trailing 1-0, Bates evened the score in the bottom of the third. Sophomore Caroline Bass (Newton, Mass.) drew a walk to start the frame and immediately stole second base. First-year Kennedy Ishii (Honolulu, Hawaii) bunted her to third and Bass scored on a passed ball. 

It looked like Bates was in for a big inning when the Bobcats loaded the bases after Bass scored. First-year Janell Sato (Honolulu, Hawaii) singled to left. Then junior Julia Panepinto (Buffalo, N.Y.) and senior Andrea Russo (Cheshire, Conn.) drew back-to-back walks. 

Otterbein starter Gabby Johnson got out of the jam by striking out the next two hitters. Johnson (2-0) pitched a complete game, holding the Bobcats to three hits. She allowed just the lone run and struck out nine batters. Johnson did walk seven Bobcats but only Bass ended up scoring.

Bobcat starter junior Kirsten Pelletier (Sidney, Maine) sent down the Cardinals in order in the second and third innings. Then she worked around an error in the fourth. But Otterbein (3-0) took advantage of a lead off walk in the fifth to take the lead for good.

Alyson McAdams doubled in a run off Pelletier (0-2) and Savannah McCoppin doubled in pinch runner Macy Allen to put the Cardinals up 3-1. McCoppin advanced to third on a ground out and scored on another ground out to add an insurance run.

Ishii led off the bottom of the fifth with a triple but got caught trying to steal home. Sophomore Payton Buxton (Middlebury, Vt.) doubled to start the seventh and with one out Bass drew her second walk of the game. But both runners were left stranded.

DeSales 9, Bates 1 (6 innings)

DeSales scored three in the third and three in the fourth and never looked back, defeating the Bobcats 9-1 in six innings on Sunday.

Aubree Fritzinger (1-2) pitched a complete game for DeSales (2-3) in the circle, allowing just two hits and striking out three. She did not walk anyone.

Bass led off the game with a single and stole second base. But a strikeout, and two ground outs left her stranded. 

Buxton (0-2) got the start in the circle for Bates. She worked around a combined five baserunners through the first two innings to keep the game scoreless. Then DeSales broke through in the third. With one out, Reilly Kerr doubled and advanced to third on a wild pitch. Heather Hall drew a walk and Hallie Muffley cleared the bases with a three-run home run.

Bates cut the deficit to two in the top of the fourth. With one out, Sato and Panepinto reached on errors. Then Russo singled home Sato, making the score 3-1.

The Bobcats left two runners stranded in the inning and DeSales added to its lead in the fourth. Aubree Fritzinger and Erin Redden singled to start the frame. Ciarrrah Holmqvist bunted them over and Kerr singled in Fritzinger. Leann Panconi drove in a run with a ground out and Muffley recorded her fourth RBI of the game with a single up the middle.

Muffley finished the game with five RBIs as DeSales added one run in the fifth and two in the sixth to end the game.