By Melanie Lanzo
Friday, April 15, the Cardinals faced their first loss of the season, and this time it was against SUNY Cortland at the Cortland Dragon Field. Although Plattsburgh has stopped their winning streak, as a collective the girls individually, earned compliments on their excellent pitching and hits.
It was a challenging game with close scores and ties between innings, but SUNY Cortland took the win, leaving the cardinals with the loss﹘ hopefully the last one they will take this season.
This time around, Kristina Maggiacomo started game one with great pitching. Maggiacomo carried the team for the first half of the innings, but she could only do so much. SUNY Cortland’s pitching starter, Karlee Weeden, allowed four hits, four walks, and struck out seven batters during the first game. With Cortland taking a 1-0 lead toward the bottom of the first inning, Plattsburgh was on a tricky edge, with runners on third base three times in the first half of the innings.
The Cardinals used a walk, sac bunt, and flyout/tag-up to put a runner on third, making their offense stronger, unlike Cortland, who still had runners on first and third with no lead in regulation. Kelsy Waite scored on the play and tied the game sending the score into more innings. This could be seen as an advantage, but it was soon swept from under by the Cardinals as SUNY Cortland managed to add two runs towards the bottom of the eighth inning, and their starting outfield Lizzy Byers took the game home. The final score for game one was 3-1.
“I think after we played a great game that unfortunately didn’t have the outcome we were looking for, ‘’ Waite said. “Softball is a huge mental sport, and it could come down to one inning as we saw against Cortland, or a whole game.
We work every day to improve our mental mistakes by boosting each other up in practice and gaining the confidence we need to transfer our individual abilities to be successful.”
Game two was a bit tenser due to a tie-looking present midway through the game. This game had Julia Golino starting, where she went for two innings allowing one hit and one walk with one strikeout. Both teams struggled to get runners in, which caused the tie bearing.
SUNY Cortland had 10 total hits and Plattsburgh had three with six walks aside from 4 forced Cortland errors. The Cardinals’ best chance to get that win was during the seventh inning when SUNY Cortland had back-to-back errors and no outs but they still weren’t able to get a run across, causing them to fall behind.
“We take it day by day, game by game. Every day we work on something little to perfect it and transfer it into game time,” Waite said. “We go onto the field with the mindset that they are no better than us and we are taking two games In order to reach our long-term goal of SUNYACS.”
Cortland ended up outhitting the Cardinals and loading the bases in the third and seventh inning, while the Cardinals left runners on the second and third. McKenna Berry and Lindsey Richards from SUNY Cortland made the winning score for their team, taking the victory. This is just a small stepping stone that has done nothing but motivate the Cardinals for their next game.
“Every game day coach brings the team a new word [of the day]. We’ve received words like overcome, now and confidence. We have faced obstacles this season and we have persevered with every one, Waite said. “Confidence was one of the first words we were given, we are a fairly young team, and playing at the collegiate level is a lot different than high school. That first game is all about confidence and our girls showed it well.”