Corsair Softball Puts up Fight Against Allan Hancock

On Tuesday, March 27, the Allan Hancock Bulldogs traveled all the way down from Santa Maria to John Adams Middle School to play the Santa Monica Softball team. The Corsairs came into the game looking to erase the memories from their first matchup with the Bulldongs, a 30-run defeat.

This game would be much closer. Freshman Vania Garcia scored the only run for the Corsairs in the bottom of the second inning, and the team only trailed by one going into the fifth inning at a 2-1 deficit, giving the Corsairs high hopes. But SMC pitcher Aliza Chacon’s arm couldn’t control the Bulldogs' offense in the 5th inning, allowing five runs giving the Bulldogs a 7-1 lead going in to the sixth.

Corsair star player, Taylor Liebesman, was substituted in towards the end of the fifth inning, and allowed one of the five runs scored. Chacon had told Liebesman, “Taylor I need you to be ready for when I’m ready to turn to you," before the inning even started.

Liebesman showed her power in the top of the sixth inning by retiring all three of the Bulldogs batters she faced. Although Liebesman was throwing to the Corsairs' new catcher Sam Soto, she only let one run cross the plate in the seventh inning. The offense however, would be shut down and SMC would lose the game in an 8-1 defeat. 

Still, this performance was a significant improvement for the Corsairs compared to the last time they played the Bulldogs. Just over a month ago, the Corsairs played at Allan Hancock College in Northern Santa Barbara County, where the Bulldogs' offense took apart the Corsairs defense leading to a 31-1 loss.

Garcia was the brightest spot in this game, going 3-3 and giving the Corsairs the confidence they needed.

Garcia first started playing softball about six months ago, and when asked about her performance, she said, “There is always room for improvement and that's what I always strive for.” 

According to Liebesman, the difference in this game compared to the last meeting was the team's mentality. 

"A lot of the girls came out hitting and I was impressed, and a lot of girls are feeling a lot more confident behind the plate so that is definitely making a difference,” Liebesman said.

Assistant coach Samantha Sheeley was able to stay positive throughout the whole game, and showed no signs of frustration despite the losing score.

“The girls are already hard enough on themselves, so I don’t need to tell them anything they already know. I want to create leaders that hold themselves accountable," Sheeley said.

The Corsairs have seven games left this season, and will play their next game against Ventura College on the road this upcoming Thursday, March 29.