Ridgewood softball falls to Orion in regional opener
Ridgewood’s varsity softball team kicked sand in Orion’s face, scoring two runs in the top of the first inning of the regional opener on Monday, May 14, at Charger Field.
Unfortunately for the Spartans, the hosts came back with five runs in the bottom of the frame and went on to win 10-2 to advance to semifinals.
“This team is young, and I’m quite happy with their progress over the year,” Ridgewood coach Kevin Coffee said. “I’m happy they were able to hold in there for the seven innings, as the last time they played Orion, they were shut out in four or five innings.”
Probably the best thing about Ridgewood’s fast start is the Spartans accomplished it with two outs.
In fact, with an 0-2 count on the third batter, Madison Miller, the Chargers were one strike from moving on to their half of the first.
But Miller waited out a ball, then cracked a double into right field.
Batting cleanup, Morgan Green smashed the ball to the fence in left field for a double that scored Miller.
Jazmine Toribio then singled up the middle to bring in Green.
Toribio was thrown out trying to steal second, which ended the inning.
Having surprised Orion in the first, the Spartans began having trouble with pitcher Ashlee Amador. She struck out seven of the nine batters she faced in the second, third and fourth frames.
Over that stretch of three innings, Brittney Atchinson and Green were the only Spartans to put the ball in play. Both hit into groundouts.
Down 9-2 in the top of the fifth, the Spartans put some runners on.
With one out, Addie Barman drew a walk on a 3-2 count. Atchison singled into left field.
Amanda Harvey hit into a fielder’s choice, with the shortstop throwing to third to erase Barman. But Ridgewood still had two on base.
The next batter worked the count to 3-2 only to strike out and end the inning.
With two outs Green in the sixth, Green whipped a single into center field. The next batter, Toribio, also put the ball in play, but the shortstop threw her out at first to cut the rally short.
Ridgewood also had chances to score in the seventh.
Ashley Collins led off with a walk on a full-count pitch.
Barman executed a sacrifice bunt to move her along.
Atchison reached on the shortstop’s error, which allowed Collins to go to third.
Then Atchison stole second.
With runners in scoring position, Harvey sweated out a 3-2 pitch and received a walk as a reward for her patience.
Harvey’s walk loaded the bases, but the next two batters struck out to end the game.
Ridgewood banged out five hits to 14 for Orion.
Green smacked two and Miller, Toribio and Atchison, one each.
Spartans with one double apiece were Miller and Green. The Chargers had only one.
Green and Toribio each collected an RBI.
Ridgewood’s defense was charged with three errors and Orion’s with one.
Collins took the loss. In six innings on the mound, she was tagged with 10 runs, eight earned, on 14 hits and one walk. She struck out two.
Meanwhile, Amador gave up two runs, both earned, in seven innings. She scattered five hits and three walks while striking out 11.