The 2015-16 Big Sky Softball Champions lost its lead in the 9th inning, dropping its first game of the fall season 4-6, to the Salt Lake Community College Bruins on the Wildcat Softball Field on Sept. 20.
WSU came into the third game of its fall season 2-0 after beating Southern Idaho on Sept. 15 and Snow College on Sept. 17.
“Honestly, we would rather have it happen now in the fall season than in the spring,” senior first baseman Sara Hingsberger said. “It’s got to happen sometime.”
After adding eight newcomers to the WSU softball roster, figuring out how to work together is going to be a key aspect in getting team wins.
“We have a lot of new young additions this year,” Hingsberger said. “We’re trying to get our chemistry together.”
The Bruins are no strangers to adding newcomers to their roster with only being a two-year program — the whole team consists of freshman and sophomore players.
SLCC has a lot of turnover from a team that finished last season with a semi-final loss in the NJCAA National Tournament.
The Bruins came out hitting, loading the bases in the first inning and scoring three runs on three hits while the Wildcats’ first three batters were retired to end the inning.
Junior pitcher Bailey Seek started on the mound for WSU and battled in the second inning with a runner in scoring position. Seek stranded the runner at third base and didn’t allow a single run to change the momentum for the Wildcats.
The Wildcats’ bats started heating up in the second inning with back-to-back RBI’s from sophomore infielder Rae Gall and junior infielder McKinley Brinkerhoff.
WSU head coach Mary Kay Amicone made a pitching change to start the third inning, bringing in freshman Jordan Lockhart in relief of Seek.
Weber State grabbed the lead for the first time in the third inning with five hits, bringing home two more runs with RBI’s from junior catcher Molly Horne and senior infielder/catcher KyRae Kogianes.
The Bruins changed their pitcher, replacing sophomore Kayla Stephens with sophomore Addie Jensen.
Jensen did as the Bruins would hope and didn’t allow another run from the Wildcats throughout the game.
SLCC evened the game at 4 apiece in the eighth inning.
The Bruins took the lead in the 9th inning with two doubles that were out of reach of the Wildcat defenders.
The ‘Cats were unable to recharge their bats in the ninth or 10th inning, ending 3-up-3-down.
Hingsberger believes that the team will learn about the each other during the fall schedule through switching defensive lineups, end-game situations and at-bat situations, even after a loss.
The Wildcats will take on the University of Utah on Sept. 29, at 3 p.m. and Colorado Northwestern Community College on Sept. 30, at 3 p.m. on the Wildcat Softball Field.