Boston College softball has won three of its last four non-conference games, but it has hardly achieved the same success in ACC play. The Eagles entered the weekend having lost their last four ACC games—by a combined score of 26-2 nonetheless—and a return home to welcome No. 24 Virginia Tech hasn’t gone much better. After dropping the series opener by a 10-2 margin, the Saturday rematch had a similar outcome, as the visiting Hokies won, 11-2.
The game did not start out the way BC (16-31, 4-16 Atlantic Coast) would have hoped, as starting pitcher Kendra Friedt surrendered seven earned runs off five hits, a walk, and a hit batter. Despite pitching well as of late, Friedt was only able to record two outs in the top half of the first frame. She was relieved by Susannah Anderson, who went two innings and allowed three earned runs off five hits, three walks, and a hit batter. Sophomore C.C. Cook fared slightly better, finishing off the game with 2 1/3 innings of relief, conceding an earned run off four hits and two walks.
So far this series, command has been an issue. VTech (42-8, 19-4) has enjoyed plenty of offensive success—in back-to-back games, the Eagles’ pitching has surrendered 10-plus runs and averaged more than a walk per inning.
“I would like our pitchers to come out and throw the ball hard,” head coach Ashley Obrest said. “We walked too many and we gave up way too many hit by pitches. When that happens, essentially every inning there’s at least two base runners on, and I think that makes it hard for a team to defend, and I think it’s hard for the hitters to feel like they’re always making up for runs.”
It’s a pattern that the Eagles would like to reverse, as they saw themselves facing a nine-run deficit at the end of three innings of play. Offensively, BC only marginally improved throughout the day, as it recorded a total of five hits and was able to get just two runs across the plate against Hokies pitcher Carrie Eberle. She kept the Eagles’ bats at bay on her way to throwing a complete game.
There were some bright spots in the lineup, though. First baseman Allyson Moore led the Eagles with two hits, going 2-for-3. Another BC player who had a good day at the plate was right fielder Gianna Randazza, who reached base safely in all three of her plate appearances. Obrest wasn’t completely discouraged by the offensive performance but knows there is still work to be done.
“I think some kids today were able to get to really good counts and then find a mistake to hit, and then I think some kids were just swinging at a drop ball that was in the dirt because they weren’t watching it all the way in,” she said. “I think a lot is discipline to be honest, and if we get ourselves in good counts, then we’ll have good pitches to swing at, but when were not disciplined we’re kind of just swinging all over the place.”
The Eagles will get a chance to avoid a second straight weekend sweep in conference play, as they host VTech in the series finale on Sunday. The game will also be Senior Day for BC—the Eagles will look to celebrate their seniors with an upset win over the Hokies.
Featured Image by Jonathan Ye / Heights Editor