After a week of delays and cancellations due to weather, the Wilkes University softball team finally returned to the field last Tuesday night against the Scranton Royals.
The team had been scheduled to play Lebanon Valley College on Tuesday, March 25, however that game was rained out. Another game, scheduled Friday, March 28, was pushed back twice through the weekend before finally being played last Wednesday. Last Tuesday’s game against Scranton was originally to be played back on March 12.
“It feels good just to be out here again,” Wilkes head coach Frank Matthews said. “We’ve been stuck in the gym since last Sunday, so just to get out of the gym and back on the field is a positive.”
The women played the first of two games to perfection. Senior pitcher Alysha Bixler earned her first win as well as the team’s first home win on the season. Bixler also ended game one with a three-run homer to left center field, ending the game at 8-0 after six innings.
The eight runs were the most Wilkes has scored in any game this season, adding to their total of just 15 runs in the first 10 games.
The Lady Colonels started the second game off just as strong as the first, jumping out to a 3-0 lead at the bottom of the fourth.
Then, at the top of the fifth inning, freshman Royal Jacqueline DeSarro knocked out a grand slam, scoring the first four of seven points for Scranton that inning.
Wilkes was never able to recover and was plagued by errors for the remainder of the game. Scranton would score four more runs, ending the game at 11-3, and split the double header 1-1.
At the beginning of the season, Matthews said that pitching would be the key to Wilkes success this season; these games however, were won at the plate and in the field.
“What did you see in the first game? Solid hitting, no errors, and we won 8-0.” Matthews said. “The second game? Sloppy hitting and a load of errors. If we can work those things out, we’ll be able to compete.”
Despite the minor setback, the team is looking forward to a strong April campaign.
The team returns to the field at 6 p.m. April 8 against Baptist Bible College at the Ralston Athletic Complex.