With eight returning seniors, three of whom are set to play softball in college, the Gryphons are looking forward to a banner season.
By Melanie Cane
With eight returning seniors, three of whom are set to play softball in college, the Gryphons are looking forward to a banner season. At 2-2 so far this season, the girls are still ironing out some kinks.
In their 3-2 loss to Fieldston April 11, Holy Child had a 2-0 lead going into the seventh inning, having scored both runs in the bottom of the fourth. Elizabeth Curcio hit a long single to centerfield and Molly Leitner followed with a home run.
While many other players got on base, they were unable to increase their lead owing to hitting into double plays and spectacular fielding by Fieldston. The Gryphons’ best opportunity came in the bottom of the sixth when they had bases loaded and two outs, but the next batter struck out.
In the seventh inning, Fieldston’s leadoff batter hit a home run. The second batter hit a double to centerfield, which dropped between the second baseman and the centerfielder. The next batter walked and the runner on second stole third and home to tie the game.
The Gryphons went down in order in the bottom of the seventh, sending the game into extra innings. The Eagles scored in the top of the eighth on a dropped fly ball to left field with two players on base. Catcher Millie Caviccio stopped the bleeding by tagging out a second runner at home plate for the third out. Leitner opened the bottom of the eighth with a leadoff single down the first base line. The next three batters went down in order, stranding her at first.
This was a disappointing loss for the Gryphons, who were missing their starting first baseman. “We still need to develop our team chemistry on the field; we are combining many veteran players with many newcomers,” said Coach Mike Clancy.
After getting injured warming up before the NYSAIS semifinal game last season, Leitner is looking to have her best season yet on the mound, said the coach. She tied the school record for most wins against Riverdale (14-4) on April 1, and had nine strikeouts against Fieldston. She is also the cleanup batter and had three hits and a walk in the Fieldston game. Curcio, shortstop and leadoff batter, notched her 100th hit in the Riverdale game.
“It was a tough loss to Fieldston, but every season has its bumps in the road,” said Coach Clancy. “We will work on making the plays that need to be made. So much of softball is about handling the routine: fielding grounders and fly balls cleanly; getting bunts down; moving runners over; hitting cutoffs.” He added, “Fieldston is a solid team, and we tip our caps to them.”