Buck blunders spoil first game

Published 11:04 am Tuesday, April 13, 2004

By By DAN WEISS / Niles Daily Star
BUCHANAN -- The deck seemed to be stacked against the Buchanan varsity softball team before its season opener against River Valley Monday afternoon even started.
With far fewer practices than normal because of the boys' basketball team reaching the state semifinals and using the gym, no practices with all team members present because of various reasons and a pair of inexperienced pitchers out of necessity, the Bucks suffered losses of 15-0 and 8-4 to the Mustangs.
That lack of experience and team chemistry was vividly apparent in the first game as Buchanan committed eight errors and the Mustangs rattled Marker for nine hits.
River Valley exploded for 13 runs in the second inning to extend its lead to 14-0. Another run in the top of the third and no score by the Bucks ended the game at 15-0 after three innings.
Brittany Warren earned the win on the mound for River Valley and allowed just two hits.
As if things weren't going bad enough for Buchanan, starting right fielder Lindsay Colip was injured in the second inning when the ball came off the bat and hit her in the face. She was taken to the hospital and didn't return.
The Bucks showed improvement in the second game.
Through four innings Pointer did not allow a hit and struck out four batters while the offense scored three runs in the first three innings.
River Valley kept its poise, however, and scored two runs in the fifth inning and tied the game at three apiece.
The Mustangs scored three more runs in the sixth to take a 6-3 lead before Buchanan scored its final run to cut the lead to 6-4. A pair of Valley runs in the seventh sealed the deal.
Pointer ended up allowing only five hits. The Bucks committed three errors.
Offensively, there was improvement as well. Buchanan had seven hits in the second game, led by a triple from Hayley Burks and doubles from Jaclyn Mummaw, Michelle Johnson and Leslie Niemier.
Buchanan, now 0-2 overall and 0-2 in the Lakeland Conference, will take part in a tournament at Otsego on Saturday.