Bellingham Softball Rebuilds in the 2021 SeasonMay 27, 2021 06:00AM ● By Pamela Johnson
by Eli Sylvia, Bulletin Sportswriter
The Bellingham girls softball team is several games into the 2021 season, and Coach Dennis Baker (above) gives the run-down about the beginning of the season: “We are 1-5 so far, with the win being against Medway, six to three, but unfortunately we fell short in our 5 losses. Watching them play the last few games, I believe we may be turning the corner and finding our stride right now, and I know that we'll be very competitive between now and the end of the season. We are sort of in the preseason as we still figure out some positions and other strategies, but the games still count. I think we're getting better every game, and our team chemistry is certainly the thing we’re working on the most right now.”
Unfortunately, the younger girls on the team did not have the chance to learn from the seniors that left last year, since the season was canceled because of COVID-19. With only two seniors, this year will be a rebuilding year for the team. They are now trying to find a way to make the team chemistry successful, and with a short preseason and a lot of new faces, they have not had much time to work with.
Senior captains Ashleigh Hughes and Brooke Silvestri are leading the team this year. Hughes is the team’s leadoff hitter since she is a great contact hitter. She is very good defensively as the centerfielder and has a great arm. Silvestri will be the number-one pitcher this year. Two years ago she won six games, so she brings a challenge to the hitters. Junior captains Ryanne Haynes and Charlotte MacGregor are also strong returning players. Two years ago, as a freshman, Haynes was named First-Team All-Star. She hit over .400 and led the Tri-Valley league in home runs. As a junior she's already committed to playing at Providence College after her senior year. MacGregor started many games for the team as a freshman two years ago. She’s the number-three hitter, has a great eye for the ball, and has a lot of patience at the plate. She has hit many singles and doubles, which has brought in an abundance of runs for the team.
The juniors have exceeded the coaches' expectations and have had a great beginning of the season. Junior Katie Matczak, the left-fielder, is exceptional at getting on base as the second hitter and is scoring a lot of runs. Junior Haley Evans is a versatile player as well. She has a high on-base percentage, which means she’s been hitting many singles and a couple of doubles, and she is patient at the plate.
Coach Baker said, “Even though we’ve played six games, I still like to think of it as a trial process. The team is looking good with four captains this year; they have been great leaders and role models and are setting a good example.”