C. Milton Wright coach John Seaman doesn't take Easter softball tournaments too seriously. A couple of extra games just gives his defending county champs a chance to stay active while most other teams are off.
This year, however, Wednesday's Elkton Tournament gave the rebuilding Mustangs (1-3) their first win of the season. They beat NorthHarford, 23-9, in the consolation game of the four-team tournament held at Eder Park in downtown Elkton.
The Mustangs, who lost seven starters from last year's 16-2 squad, hit the ball well for the first time this season. They got 21 hits in Wednesday's two games.
In a 7-3 loss in the tournament opener, the Mustangs' bats finally came alive with eight hits against some powerful North East, Cecil County, pitching. Abby Walls, Danielle Rivasand Jenny Stagnoli had two hits each for C. Milton Wright.
The Mustangs had a strong second inning when Rivas, Stagnoli and Heather Hoffman hit consecutive singles to drive over two runs. Stagnoli and Hoffman each had an RBI.
"Three weeks ago, we couldn't have hit her," said Seamon. "A lot of the girls just haven't seen this tough pitching that's on varsity as opposed to JV."
The only regulars returning are first baseman Rivas and third baseman Stagnoli. Several sophomores and freshmen will start.
Defense has also been an area of concern, although the Mustangs got some excellent performances in the tournament.
"We make a lot of mistakes," said Seamon. "We are improving with every game, but this is a much different team than last year. We are very, very inexperienced."
Against North Harford pitching, the Mustangs benefited from 16 walks. They scored 12 runs in the first two innings alone.
Rivas led the Mustangs with three hits in five trips to the plate, while Walls, Kim Haker and Tonya Dorsey had two hits each.
The Mustangs also got solid performances on the mound. Haker allowed four earned runs in the first game while freshman Jenny Lewis gave up six in the consolation game.
North Harford (1-2)struggled through both of its tournament games. The Hawks were the victims of a no-hitter when they lost to Elkton, 8-0, in their first game.
Against C. Milton Wright, the Hawks did get a few hits although not enough to make up for a rough day for pitchers Jamie Izdebski and Michele Mullen.
"Generally control is not a problem for us," said North Harford Coach Dawn Healey.
"We've never played two gamesin one day, and that second game (against C. Milton Wright) was justone of those games when we did not do many things well."
However,the Hawks did get a nice effort at the plate from Tonia Bruno (2-4, two doubles, two RBI), Nicoll Wimer (2-4) and Tara Testerman (1-2, a triple, one RBI).