HB softball falls to Milford
Under a grey sky and on damp grass, the Milford High School softball team’s fielding was fluent against the Hollis Brookline bats on Friday.
The Spartans allowed seven hits and stranded 11 Cavalier base runners in a 6-1 Division II win.
Beth Brewer initiated the Milford (8-6) scoring in the second frame with a shot to shallow center that drove in a pair of runs, but the bats heated up further in the fifth.
Carley Holtshouser and Jen Dupuis each got aboard with base hits along with Julia Mazzeo, via a walk, loading the bases for Erin Tyrrell who drove in a run with a shot up the middle of the Hollis Brookline infield. Catherine Paul made it 5-0 when her zinger redirected off of pitcher Ashley Skey’s glove and past short stop Stephanie Buchanan to bring in two more runs.
“Literally, sometimes the ball doesn’t bounce your way and that’s the game,” said Hollis Brookline coach Tim Girzone. “Milford took advantage of every opportunity it had and there were times when we had opportunities, but we couldn’t capitalize on them.”
Jen Carson added the final Milford tally in the sixth when she belted a home run over the left center wall. The Spartans produced a total of eleven hits.
“We had base unners, we put the ball in play and put the pressure on the defense,” Milford coach Jim Rines said.
The Cavaliers (5-8) were able to produce base runners, but the Milford defense was too sharp to let them home. In the bottom of the sixth, Olivia Lukovits accounted for the lone Hollis Brookline run with an RBI that moved Michaela Day to third, but the Spartans got out of the inning when Lukovits was picked off by Mazzeo, the catcher, in an attempt to steal second.
“We knew where the runners were and where to get the out,” said Rines. “We didn’t try to overdo, just try to get the outs. We stress that if we get 21 outs and we catch and throw then good things will happen.”
The Cavaliers had another bid in the fifth with runners at the corners, but Milford orchestrated a double play when Natalie Paquin’s bunt looped up and into Mazzeo’s mitt who then threw out Heather Bourassa at first.
“I thought our approach at the plate was much more aggressive this time around,” said Girzone. “We had opportunities to push runs across, but we just couldn’t get that timely hit. I was pleased with our approach at the plate.”
With the fielding as clean as it was, Tyrrell only needed three strikeouts in giving up the one run.
“Erin pitched very well, kept them off balance and established her changeup early on in the game,” Rines said.
Meanwhile, Skey struck out four batters on the mound and was one for three at the plate with a walk.
Milford is now riding the momentum of winning five of its last six games and is looking forward to seeing Souhegan (9-4) on Tuesday.
“They’re playing with some confidence now,” Rines said.