Falcons softball strikes out against Giants in MCAL playoffs

Junior Paige Murphy practices pitching before the Redwood Giants were up to bat.
Junior Paige Murphy practices pitching before the Redwood Giants were up to bat.
Dempsey Boone

On Wednesday, May 8, the Archie Williams Falcons varsity softball team (10-4) flew to the Redwood Giants (11-3) home diamond for a Marin County Athletic League (MCAL) playoff battle. This was the Falcon’s first time securing an MCAL playoff spot in eight years. This past season they finished third in the league standings. Seven innings of tough pitching and stout defense from the Giants proved to be too much for the Falcons, who suffered a 2-8 loss and were eliminated from MCAL championship contention. 

In their previous meetings, Archie Williams went 1-1 against Redwood and that showed in the first two innings, as the teams went back and forth. Each team exchanged hits and runs which developed into a Giants lead by one going into the third inning 1-2. 

Archie Williams Softball catcher, junior Kennedy Dunsing, catches an incoming ball. (Dempsey Boone)

“I thought we had pretty tough at bats against a really tough pitcher. We had baserunners, we just had a hard time scoring,” said coach Neil Murphy. 

The third inning is when the Falcon’s defensive woes began. The Giants brought home two more runs, increasing their lead to 2-4. Freshman Lydia Battaglia closed out the third inning for the Falcons with a running catch in deep center field as the final out for the Giants. 

“We could have cleaned up defense a lot and minimized our errors so that we could make the innings quicker,” Lydia said. 

The Falcons headed into the fifth inning down three runs, looking to even the score. Archie Williams had no trouble getting runners on base but could not convert them into runs. 

“We had runners on base almost every inning and was unable to score. That’s hard to do. It’s hard to win games when you do that over and over again,” Murphy said. 

Junior Kennedy Dunsing makes the run from homebase to first base. (Dempsey Boone)

In the bottom of the fifth inning, the Falcon’s defense could not keep up with the aggressive hitting displayed by Redwood. A crucial error by sophomore third baseman Abby Berner paired with two questionable calls at home plate allowed the Giants to add four points to their score, going up 2-8.

“We’ve been saying all week that the team that makes the least errors will win the game, and at the end of the day, that’s what happened. We made a lot of errors, we just couldn’t play tidy,” said junior pitcher Paige Murphy.

Strong pitching from Paige held the Giants scoreless in both the sixth and seventh innings, but the Falcons offense could not rally together any more runs. The final score ended in favor of the Giants, 2-8.  

Senior Amelia Richer steps up to the plate to bat. (Dempsey Boone)

“I think Paige pitched really well. She pitched to contact. Unfortunately, our defense didn’t play very well today, and that’s what ultimately killed us,” Murphy said. 

Despite the loss, the Falcons’ historic season will continue into the North Coast Section (NCS) playoffs. Archie Williams is yet to find out who their appointment will be but will play the game on Wednesday, May 15. Archie Williams will be ranked at a higher seed, and receive a home-field advantage. 

“This next week we’re focusing on practicing harder and taking the mistakes that we made from this game and ensuring that they don’t happen again in our next game,” Paige said.

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