According to the calendar, the spring sports season began April 4.
But, as is usually the case in Vermont, scheduling baseball, softball, or lacrosse games in early April is an act of faith.
For example, the Otter Valley softball team was to play Brattleboro at Sawyer Field last Monday afternoon. The day began with snow showers, mixed with a bit of sleet, before changing to rain. The temperature didn’t get above 40 degrees. As a result, the Colonels’ opener got postponed.
The defending state champions had to wait until last Wednesday to open the 2011 season.It was still cold and raw, but at least it wasn’t snowing.
For their opponents, the Bellows Falls Terriers, it might as well have snowed, as they were completely overwhelmed by the Colonels in a 32-0 loss at Sawyer Field that was stopped after five innings due to the 15-run rule.
Bellows Falls pitcher Emma Shaw and second baseman Shawna Coutu got their team’s only hits, both singles, as Colonels pitcher Kayla Wood picked up where she left off last season. She walked 1, struck out 5, and managed to keep her concentration in a long, ugly game.
The Colonels batted around in each inning, scoring 7 runs in the first, 8 in the second, 11 in the third and 6 in the fourth.
Ariel Kane went 2-for-2 with 3 walks. Cassie Rawson had a double and 3 walks, while Wood and Kalee Graham both hit triples, and McKenzie Bover slammed a pair of doubles.
The Terriers committed numerous errors and were not sharp at all. The damage would have been worse had not Colonels coach Kelly Markol directed her team to go one base at a time by the end of the second inning.
It was the type of game that did neither team any good. With warmer weather and more practice time outside, the Terriers will have better days.
• Leland & Gray pitcher Nicole Sherman started the season with a no-hitter in a 16-0 win at Arlington last Friday. Sherman struck out 11 and walked 3 in the six-inning game cut short by the 15-run rule.
Sherman helped herself with a 2-for-4 day at the plate with 2 doubles and 2 RBIs. Michaela Tietz went 4-for-4 with a double, triple, 2 RBIs, and 3 runs scored. Chelsea Cox was 4-for-5 with a home run, 4 RBIs, and 3 runs scored.
In all, the Rebels had 16 hits and put the game away with a 10-run sixth inning.
• Twin Valley opened the season last Friday with a 7-3 win at West Rutland.
The Wildcats got a little bit of help from everybody, as Bonnie Boliver and Bryer-lyn Crawford both went 2-for-4, while Sam Bernard tripled and scored 2 runs, Savannah Nesbitt had a double and 3 RBIs, and Kate Corey had a double and drove in a run. The 1-0 Wildcats travel to Townshend to face Leland & Gray on April 15.
• Leland & Gray began its quest for a fourth straight state baseball title with an 11-3 win at Arlington last Friday.
Drew Barnum just missed a no-hitter, giving up a single to Arlington pitcher Gunner Beach with two outs in the seventh. Barnum struck out 10 and went 2-for-4 with a solo home run. Brandon Reilly went 4-for-4 to lead the Rebels at the plate.
The 1-0 Rebels host Twin Valley on April 15.
• The Red Clover Rovers fun runs will resume for the 2011 season on Wednesday, April 27, at 6:30 p.m. and continue every other Wednesday through Aug. 31. These are timed 1-, 2-, and 3-mile runs that take place on Upper Dummerston Road in Brattleboro. They are free and open to all ages. Visit www.redcloverrovers.com for more information about this running club and its events.
• The Connecticut River Valley Baseball League began its 10th season of play on Sunday. In a doubleheader in Dummerston, the Keene Black Dawgs downed the Putney Fossils, 9-4, while the Brattleboro River Rats shut out the Saxtons River Pirates, 6-0. In the other opener, the Chester Pirates beat the Claremont Cardinals, 15-3, at Barnes Park in Claremont, N.H. Visit www.crvbl.org for the season schedule and other details.