The Brattleboro Colonels softball team started its season in dominant fashion. All of their first three games have ended after five innings due to the 15-run mercy rule.
But all three of those wins, by an aggregate score of 68-0, came against Division II opponents. Colonels coach Kelly Markol knew that the real test of what kind of team she had would come on April 18, when the Mount Anthony Patriots came to Sawyer Field.
On a gray, cold, and slightly drizzly afternoon, the Colonels got a reality check with a 12-5 loss to the Patriots.
MAU is perennially one of the top teams in Division I, so for Markol, it was not a shocker that the Patriots won. She was more upset with what she called “extremely poor defense.”
“We made a lot of errors in the field, and that is not okay,” Markol said. “MAU showed us that we still have a lot of work to do to get better as a team.”
Cat Worthington put the Patriots ahead in the first inning with a three-run homer over the left field fence. A wild pitch and a passed ball led to two more runs in the third inning.
A fly ball hit by Lauren McKinney was misplayed and scored Brattleboro’s first two runs in the third inning. Mya McAuliffe followed an RBI single to make it a 5-3 game, but McAuliffe was thrown out trying to stretch her base hit into a double, ending the Colonels’ rally.
MAU put the game out of reach in the fourth inning when they scored four more runs, including a two-run homer by Emilie O’Brien that cleared the center field fence. The Pats got another run off a wild pitch in the fifth, and added two more runs in the sixth.
Brattleboro’s Rachel Rooney and Hailey Derosia both got on base with singles in the fifth, and both scored on wild pitches, but that would be it for the Colonels’ offense. Derosia was the losing pitcher. She threw five innings before Leah Madore came in to finish up the game in the sixth inning.
“Hailey and Leah did a good job of pitching, but we can’t count on them bailing us out every game,” said Markol.
The effort against Mount Anthony was a far cry from the 18-0 drubbing of Fair Haven on April 16 at Sawyer Field. Derosia struck out 11 and threw her second no-hitter of the season, giving up just two walks and hitting two batters. Derosia also had a great day at the plate, going 3-for-4 with a double and a two-run homer.
Brattleboro took a 7-0 lead in the first inning as they sent 11 batters to the plate. Bella Powell hit a RBI triple, Derosia doubled, and McKinney and McAuliffe each had RBI singles. Powell drove in another run with a single in the second inning as the Colonels scored three runs. In the third, Brattleboro racked up two more runs on singles by Derosia and McAuliffe.
The Colonels finished with six runs in the fourth, which included Derosia’s homer over the left field fence and base hits from McKinney and McAuliffe.
• Springfield’s Hannah Crosby gave up hits to the first two Leland & Gray batters, then held the visiting Rebels hitless the rest of the game as the Cosmos rolled to a 15-0 mercy rule win in six innings on April 17.
Crosby, one of the top pitchers in the state, struck out 13 and walked two. The Rebels have several ninth-graders on the team, and the inexperience was evident in the first inning when they gave up eight runs on four hits and four errors.
The Cosmos finished with 13 hits, including three singles by Crosby. Abby Lowe threw five innings and took the loss for the 0-1 Rebels.
• Fair Haven beat Brattleboro, 10-1, at Tenney Field on April 16. The Slaters needed just seven hits to get their runs, thanks to several walks and hit batsmen stemming from the wildness of Brattleboro’s pitchers. Fair Haven was also 9-for-9 in stolen base attempts.
The Colonels had their chance to score runs, but winning pitcher Parker Morse and reliever Evan Reed surrendered only seven hits. Morse threw three scoreless innings, then battled out of a bases-loaded jam in the fourth, escaping with just one run given up.
Brattleboro bounced back on April 18 at Tenney Field with a 17-4 win over Mount Anthony in a five-inning game cut short by the mercy rule. Winning pitcher Brenden Gilbeau held the Patriots to just three hits. He struck out three and walked only one batter.
Brattleboro scored two runs in the first on an RBI single by Adam Newton and an RBI double by Tyler Millerick, then broke the game open by scoring 13 runs in the third inning.
The Colonels sent 17 batters to the plate in the third. Evan Finnell drove in three runs with a pair of singles, and Hunter Beebe, Gilbeau, and Newton all had RBI singles. The win improved the Colonels’ record to 2-1.
• Winning pitcher Christian Thomsen went the distance as Leland & Gray beat Bellows Falls, 4-2, at Hadley Field on April 17.
The Rebels won their opener by breaking a 2-2 tie with an unearned run in the sixth inning and another unearned run in the seventh.
Thomsen did the rest, striking out 14 batters and holding the Terriers to just three hits. He walked four batters and hit three batters.
BF got its first run in the first inning when Jack Burke reached base with a walk, and eventually scored on a passed ball. RBI doubles in the second inning by Kaie Quigley and Chris Bovat gave the Rebels a 2-1 lead before BF tied the game in the fifth with an RBI triple by Grady Lockerby.
Jack Brown took the loss for the Terriers. He went 6 2/3 innings, striking out 10 batters and walking two.
• The Brattleboro girls had little trouble dispatching Northampton, Mass., 21-5, on April 15 at Natowich Field.
The 2-1 Colonels got six goals and four assists from Liz Day, while Tobin Lonergan had four goals and two assists.
Mollie Patenaude and Liv Romo each scored three goals for Brattleboro, Bri Paul picked up two tallies, and Lucy Szpila, Avalon Johnston, and Sophi Mikijaniec added one goal each. Lauryn Sargent contributed with an assist.
Elly MacDonald scored all five of Northampton’s goals.
• The Brattleboro boys beat Otter Valley, 6-4, on April 20 at Rutland’s Alumni Field in a game that the Colonels had to work hard to ensure a victory.
The Otters may be a Division II team, but they gave the Colonels everything they had after Brattleboro took an early 3-0 lead off a pair of goals by Ryan Tyler and another from Austin Wood.
Otter Valley outscored the Colonels, 4-2, from that point and trimmed the lead to 5-4 with less than five minutes in regulation. Brattleboro’s defense did the rest, and the Colonels got the insurance goal they needed when Aden McMahon scored his second goal of the day off a Tanner Edson steal.
Dylan Carrasquillo had another strong game in goal as the Colonel boys improved to 2-0-1.
Stay off muddy trails!
• If the nicer weather of the past couple of weeks has put you in the mood to hike, the Green Mountain Club (GMC) wants to remind everyone that most of the trails around Vermont are still too soggy to use.
According to the GMC, wet soils on and around hiking trails are very susceptible to erosion in April and May. To protect fragile soil and surrounding vegetation, some trails may be closed by land managers and the GMC asks everyone to respect the signage you see.
Hikers walking on saturated soils or on the sides of trails cause damage to surrounding vegetation, widen trails, and inhibit natural drainage. That means more work for trail maintainers later in the season fixing erosion caused by careless hikers. Even if a trail is not posted, hikers should exercise good judgment and turn around if conditions are unfavorable.
To get the latest info on trail conditions around Vermont, call the GMC’s visitor center at 802-244-7037 (or email email@example.com) or the Vermont State Parks Call Center at 888-409-7579.
A weekly trail update with the latest conditions and a list of alternative hikes will also be posted at vtstateparks.com/hiking.html.
• One trail that is usable this time of year is the West River Trail, particularly the section that runs through Jamaica and Londonderry. The GMC’s Manchester Section will lead their annual spring hike to Hamilton Falls on April 28 at 1 p.m., and to Angel Falls on May 5 at 1 p.m.
Girls soccer camp offered in Brattleboro
• A new camp for middle school girls will run Aug. 5-9, focusing on soccer and leadership skills. Sponsored by the Putney Soccer Club, the camp is open to girls who are completing grades 6-8 this spring and will be held on the grounds of Hilltop Montessori School in Brattleboro.
The coaching staff will consist of high school soccer coaches at Brattleboro Union High School and The Putney School.
Camp participants will spend a week playing soccer and developing their leadership skills as they get to know other girls in the Brattleboro area. They will spend mornings and early afternoons honing their technical skills and developing their fitness, positioning, and vision for the game.
Over the course of the week, the girls will also be challenged through soccer training and relationship building as they brainstorm ways to impact their local community. They will identify their strengths, set goals for the coming fall within academics, sports, and their family lives, and create an action plan to help the community.
The camp cost is $150 (scholarships are available). The sessions will go from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. each day. To register, go to www.putneysoccerclub.org, email firstname.lastname@example.org, or contact Edwin de Bruijn during evenings at 802-254-6965.
Senior bowling roundup
• On the next-to-last week of the winter season of the Brattleboro Senior Bowling League at Brattleboro Bowl, Team 3 (57-23) officially clinched the season championship. Team 4 (51-29) had a 5-0 week to move into second place and pass Team 9 (48-32), which had an 0-5 week to fall into third place. However, both teams are too far behind to overtake Team 3 with just one week left.
Team 7 (47-33) is in fourth place, followed by Team 10 (42-38), Team 5 (39-41), Team 12 and Team 8 (both 38-42), Team 2 (37-43), Team 11 (34-46), Team 1 (26-54), and Team 6 (24-56).
Dolly Stone had the women’s high handicap game (231), while Carole Frizzell had the women’s high handicap series (655). Peter Cross had the men’s high handicap game (289) and series (682). Team 7 had the high team handicap game (890) and series (2,488).
In scratch scoring, Cross rolled a 264 on the way to a 560 series, while Robert Rigby had a 230 game as part of his 639 series, and Warren Corriveau Sr. had a 246 as part of his 594 series.
Josie Rigby had a 209 game as part of her 563 series to lead the women. Gary Montgomery (534) also had a 500-plus series.