By Samantha Gillis
Some may dub it as a rough start, but the Lady Builder softball team went 0-4 on Friday and Saturday at the Central Baptist Tournament in Conway, Ark. Despite the record, Amber Good, head softball coach, believes in her team’s abilities.
Good said, “Our scores do not reflect how well they are performing. The pitchers are doing a great job of producing ground balls and pop flies. Defensively, we have to make the plays to support their efforts. We have a very talented team and once we get all the kinks worked out and get more confident on the field, our scores will start to show that.”
Specifically the pitchers have performed well said Good. Rachel Ratcliffe, junior pitcher, started against Central Baptist College. CBC is a ranked in the top 25 of NAIA softball teams. CBC knocked in 13 hits verse SC’s 2 hits, which is not a large difference considering their national standing, said Good.
Alysse Yates, junior pitcher, started both the game against Bacone College and the game against Oklahoma Baptist University. She held BC to just two runs. Ratcliffe closed for Yates against OBU and Yates closed for Radcliff against Baker University.
Good said, “Our pitchers thus far have done a fantastic job on the mound.”
The Builders also played Saint Gregory University on Feb. 25, they lost both games 11-4 and 14-6.
“St. Gregory’s was runner up at the national tournament last year and they have a very talented team this year. I was pleased with the way that we performed against SGU, it was good to see that we can step up and play at a high level,” Good said.
Nicole Wilson, senior infielder and team captain, is not worried about the loses. “It’s still early for us and we have a lot of young girls starting,” she said.
Wilson thinks the team has talent that can come through for the team if they push hard through from beginning to end. “We have innings where we play really well, and innings where we kind of slack off. We need to eliminate the innings where we slack,” she said.
As captain, Wilson tries to make the atmosphere light and enjoyable for the players. “I like to joke with the girls and motivate them instead of yell and scream to get them going. I know what coaching strategies have worked on me in the past so I try to utilize that in my leadership.”
Good said, “Right now our problem is mental toughness, we have to learn to bounce back from our mistakes and not let them create more.”
Once the team can overcome their mental blocks Good knows they will the difference on the field and throughout the season.
The Lady Builders play again at 5 and 7 p.m. today at Hastings College in Hastings, Neb.
Samantha Gillis is a senior majoring in convergent journalism. You may e-mail her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
This article was edited by Lea Shores.