Fourteen brave members of the Sheffield Hornets baseball club battled against a strong Coventry team and the treacherous conditions of the Ponderosa to rack up their first two victories of the season, winning 13-2 and 12-1 across the two games.
The theme throughout the afternoon, other than mud, was the collaboration between both experienced and new players to produce a fine team performance. This was no greater exemplified than by the two pitchers, with Hornets veteran Josh Taylor dominating in the first game, and debutant Keita Ito coming close to a complete game shutout in the second.
Such pitching meant that those playing defence were rarely called upon, but when they were, all performed their duties admirably. Most notable of these performances was that of Janet Wang at first base, who was solid throughout and made one spectacular play to slide into the base to reach it just ahead of the runner.
A total of seven of Saturday’s Hornets squad are in their first year with the team and all made significant contributions to the total of 25 runs amassed during the day. A huge key to this success was the way that the batters took advantage of opportunities provided by Coventry’s wayward pitching and fielding errors to create havoc on the bases.
Head coach and club president Kyra Bradley said of the game “It was great to see such a terrific performance by all our players, both in defence and offence. Everyone, from players playing for the first time outside of training to those who have played for years, did an outstanding job to put everything we’ve worked on this semester into play.”
Bradley, assisted by first base coach Spencer Lawn, did an excellent job of guiding new players through their first foray into Hornets baseball, and the few mistakes that were made by the home team provide excellent learning opportunities for those playing their first games. It is without doubt that the team can use this experience, combined with pride in their overall performance, to generate momentum as the National University Baseball Championship approaches in Spring 2017.