Basalt softball salvages split in Cedaredge | AspenTimes.com

Basalt softball salvages split in Cedaredge

Jon Maletz

It took a while for the Basalt girls softball team to wake up.The Longhorns, who traveled to Cedaredge Saturday for a doubleheader that started at 10 a.m., struggled through a Game 1 loss in which they committed more errors than they did hits. Basalt’s bats did, however, come alive in time for the Longhorns to salvage a split in the second game with a 14-3, four-inning mercy rule win.”We had some uncharacteristic mistakes,” Basalt head coach Bruce Matherly said Sunday. “When we have nine errors and only lose by four, that’s a game we should’ve had if we play our normal game.”Senior Lisa Warnecke started Game 1 and kept her team in the game. She allowed four walks and struck out five. The Basalt defense, however, committed a season-high nine errors. Infielders had trouble fielding groundballs and outfielders had trouble shading their eyes in the mid-morning sun. Despite their fielding woes, the Longhorns led, 6-3, after three innings. The Bruins responded by scoring four runs in each of the next two innings. Basalt, which was held scoreless after the fifth, could not close the gap. While they stole nine bases, the Longhorns were outhit, 12-6. Jennifer Barton’s double was the lone extra-base hit for Basalt (5-7-1 overall, 2-3 3A Western Slope). “If we play error-free ball, we’re a good team,” Matherly said. “If we kick the ball around, we’re in trouble.”While they weren’t error-free, Basalt turned things around in Game 2. Freshman Alexa Aitken surrendered just three hits, five Longhorns had two or more hits, and the defense had just one miscue in the 14-3 win.Aitken, who struck out six and walked five in four innings, batted leadoff and went 3-for-4 with two doubles. Barton had two hits, including her second inside-the-park homerun in the last three games. Barton reached base four times.Cleanup hitter Katy Mulcahy was 2-for-4 with a run driven in. Warnecke had three hits and two RBI. No. 9 hitter Carmel Mulcahy was 2-for-3 with three singles and three runs scored.”When we’re clicking as a team, we’re getting hits up and down the lineup,” Matherly said.The Longhorns have just three league contests – two today against Gunnison and one Thursday against rival Aspen – to bolster their playoff resumé. Regional play begins next week.”We have such a young team, but they’re holding their own,” Matherly said. “If we can get on a roll, anything can happen.”Jon Maletz’s e-mail address is jmaletz@aspentimes.com