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SMC Softball: Belles go .500 over break

Meredith Kelly | Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Saint Mary’s won five of ten games last week in a spring break tournament in Fort Myers and Cape Coral, Fla. The Belles started off their first day without any wins, yet as the tournament progressed, their play strengthened.

“The hardest thing was just getting started with 10 freshman,” Belles coach Erin Sullivan said. “We were also missing our center fielder in the first game. [We had] a lot of nerves and a lot of firsts, just a little bit of growing pains.”

Senior captain Morgan Bedan agreed, saying the team faced many challenges throughout the tournament.

“We lacked energy and confidence during some of the games and I think it cost us a couple of the games,” Bedan said. “We struggled to string hits together, too. That killed us in a few of the games.”

Regardless of challenges, Bedan said she believes the tournament was a valuable learning experience for the team.

“Florida is meant to be a warm-up and I hope that the team learns a lot from the experience, and has a better idea of what it takes to be successful at this level,” Bedan said.

Sullivan also said Florida was an opportunity to learn. She added that from playing teams such as Richard Stockton, who beat Saint Mary’s by eight runs on the second day, Saint Mary’s has the opportunity to become a better team.

“Richard was a tough game. They are the team we really want to be and we really should be,” said Sullivan. “The only good thing about the loss to them was that we learned from them and hopefully we will be like them by the end of the year.”

Both Sullivan and Bedan said one of the star players of the week was freshman outfielder Sarah Callis, who recorded fourteen putouts over the course of the week.

“I knew she was good going into this week, but she was a staple for our team all week,” Bedan said. “I was very proud of her. She will be a great leader for her class.”

Junior pitcher Callie Selner also shined throughout the week. She earned her first win of the season over Delaware Valley with 13 strikeouts and no earned runs, and had a 0.28 ERA.

“Callie Selner threw five great games and deserved five wins,” said Bedan, “But unfortunately our offense didn’t back her up.”

Sophomore Victoria Connelley also proved her ability throughout the tournament. She holds the team’s longest current hitting streak – nine games – and the team had winning record (5-3) when she batted in the leadoff spot. She also holds a batting average of .387.

“Victoria Connelly also had a great week,” said Bedan, “She has made great strides from her freshman season and was a great leadoff hitter for us.”

The Belles will play at home on Friday against Wheaton.

Contact Meredith Kelly at [email protected]