By Chelsea Underwood |Staff Writer|
Coyote softball failed to deliver against the Chico State Wildcats during their April 14 0-2 road series loss.
The Lady ‘Yotes were rocky from beginning to end in the first game, allowing a three-run home run by the Wildcats catcher Hailey Stockman in the first inning.
Trouble escalated in the third inning when the Wildcats scored another two runs, augmenting their advantage to a 5–0 lead.
Junior infielder Alyssa Flores answered the Wildcats’ five-run rally with a booming home run to left field in the sixth inning. Junior infielder Britney Butler continued the ‘Yotes’ comeback by hitting another solo home run to left field in the seventh inning.
However, the team’s efforts were not enough to take the lead away from the Wildcats, as they won the contest 5–2.
“They never give up. They always fight,” said head coach Tacy Duncan. “We just don’t have the pitching to keep us in the game.”
With one more game to go, the Coyotes were eager to pull away with a victory and split the series.
Junior Jamie Leffingwell came out strong in the second inning with a hard double down the right field line. Duncan saw an opportunity to get Leffingwell over to third base and called for a sacrifice bunt.
Senior Felicia Cervantes executed the play to perfection, and with the help of the Wildcats’ second baseman, who committed an error, Leffingwell was able to score.
The revamped Coyotes seemed poised for victory as they took the early 1–0 advantage. The Wildcats were unable to do any damage in the first three innings as senior Carly Land was finding early success on the mound. She ultimately delivered four strikeouts and allowed only three hits.
“It felt good,” said Land. “They were a good team. They put up a good fight.”
Despite Land’s impressive start, she was unable to keep the Wildcats off the scoreboard as they later tied the game in the fourth with a RBI double into center field, scoring a run.
Land’s performance shows how far she has come since breaking her wrist in six places while playing in the outfield during practice her freshman year.
She had multiple surgeries after her grueling injury, along with physical therapy on her way to a remarkable recovery. With the game tied at one, the pressure rose between the two teams.
The Coyotes’ defense was unable to stop the Wildcats from scoring their second run of the game, which proved to be the deciding run in the fifth inning.
“We should have had that second game,” said Cervantes. “They got clutch hits, they clutched up, that’s pretty much what happened.”
Despite not having played to their full potential all season long, the Coyotes still have one more series left to turn their fortunes around.