West softball breaks out bats for win
BY JOHN HORNBERG - JHORNBERG@VICAD.COM
March 8, 2013 at 10:03 p.m.
Updated March 7, 2013 at 9:08 p.m.
Courtney Rigamonti had simple instructions for Meagan Marthiljohni as she prepared for her turn at the plate in the fifth inning.
"I told her, 'Get me some green; you got this,'" said the coach for Victoria West, "And she said, 'Yes, ma'am!'"
Up nine runs in the fifth inning of a sure win against Beeville on Friday night, all West needed was one more run to force a mercy-rule victory.
With runners standing on second and third and only one out, a quick ending was within reach.
"I was just trying to put the barrel on the ball," Marthiljohni said. "... I was trying to stay off the high ones. That last one was a high one, but it's all right. I hit it."
And the sophomore outfielder obliged on the first pitch, driving a flare down the left field line that died at the grass and plated the final two runs, handing West a 14-3 win over the Lady Trojans.
The hit capped off a stellar night for the young outfielder, who is in her first season of varsity play. She was 4 for 5 at the plate, driving in six runs and falling a home run short of the cycle.
"She stepped up for sure. She had a great game tonight and had fun doing it, and that's what it takes," Rigamonti said.
Beeville scored first, but the Warriors were able to erase an early 1-0 deficit by scoring five runs in the second inning. The first five batters of the inning reached base, including three consecutive on error.
Overall, the Warriors benefited from six errors in the field by Beeville, leading to almost all of West's runs during rallies in the second, third and fifth innings.
"Just to come up there and have fun (Friday), and everyone was nice and relaxed and had confidence," Rigamonti said. "We showed the other team we could hit. It was a huge encouragement for the whole team. That positivity, it went throughout everyone."
It was a night of big hits for the Warriors.
Brandi Plummer reached on a fly-ball error in the second inning that brought two runs home, followed by Marthiljohni's two-run double later in the inning.
In the third, the sophomore struck again, driving in two more runs with a triple, and scored on the first pitch to Emily Coronado, which was ruled illegal by the umpire.
"All week long, we've been working our bats, just trying to build up the confidence that we are going to hit each other around," Rigamonti said.
The Warriors ended the game in the fifth, taking advantage of three passed balls to score two of their five runs in the inning and advance more into scoring position for Plummer, who drove in a run with a one-out double.
Plummer wrapped up the night 1 for 3 at the plate but was on base all four times she stepped up to the plate and scored three times.
Opening District 30-4A play with a win was important for the Warriors, who have had their fair share of struggles this season. Marthiljohni didn't discount the Warriors' win after the team's recent rough patch.
"I'm excited, and it meant a lot to win this game," she said. "I'm pumped. ... It's been a lot of fun this year."
The team struggled in the field and at the plate against Corpus Christi King on Tuesday, making 12 errors in a 17-6 loss at home.
The team has been working hard over the last week to improve its fielding and hitting, Rigamonti said.
"We've been working on after one error, shaking it off and knowing ... that we all have confidence in each other that they can field it and stepping up and making that next play," the coach said.