By Mike Deak
BOURBON – There are just two games to sample from in Triton’s young 2021 softball season. But a pattern is starting to form.
Ebbs and flows are becoming the norm for the Trojans. After an up-and-down loss to Rochester on Tuesday, Triton employed the same methods but came out on the right end of a 12-6 win over John Glenn Wednesday in its home opener at Keyser Field.
“Yeah, you could say that,” laughed Triton head coach Shannon Houlihan. “With that year off, we’ve got some kids who just need to get a few games in to get comfortable. It’s becoming a trend, but they are all doing well with some of the simple stuff. It’s some other decisions that have gotten us in a little trouble here the past two days.”
Glenn used several Triton miscues to get itself going, a dropped third strike and a wild pitch helping in two runs in the first inning. Victoria Dunkelberger later ripped a two-out, two-run double to tie the game in the fifth, and a throwing error on an easy play let in two more runs in the seventh.
But for Triton pitcher Lena Doll, she took the bad with the good, and had some really good moments. Despite the gaffs in the first, she avoided more damage with a pair of strikeouts, then allowed just one hit through the next three innings, including a three-pitch fourth inning.
Doll would finish her second straight complete game, allowing seven hits and two walks, but struck out nine and endured two errors.
“Lena has a lot of potential, we’re just getting her mentally focused on finishing the game,” Houlihan said. “Obviously as the year goes on she is going to get so much better. She did a nice job today getting out of some tough jams.”
Triton’s offense, while not totally polished in a 12-run outburst, had a big response in the first inning to take back the lead. After loading the bases among a pair of hit batsmen, Lauren Snyder rapped an RBI single and Doll drove in a run with a fielder’s choice. A wild pitch brought in Jolie Groves for a 3-2 lead.
In a seven-run fifth, Jaelyn Bules and Snyder both had RBI singles among three Falcon errors as Triton brought 12 to the plate.
Snyder, Doll and Bules all drove in two, Taren Yates added three hits and Madeline Doll had a pair of base knocks.
“We want them to be aggressive at the plate but to also be selective,” stated Houlihan. “They’re doing a good job recognizing pitches in the zone and looking for a pitch they can hit and leaving the pitches out of the zone.”
Triton (1-1) will visit Argos on Saturday for a doubleheader.