After the First Week of Action, Softball Team Is Off to 0-3 Start

With the smell of freshly cut grass and a slight chill in the air, it must mean softball season has begun.
With a new coach and a number of new players, the Santa Monica College softball team kicked off a long- awaited season this past Monday after postponements due to the recent rain and a shortage of players.
The home opener last Monday featured SMC against the visiting Ventura College Pirates.
The game was the first for a team that recently came together and opened the season with a 15-0 defeat.
The very next day SMC had a road game against Santa Barbara City College Vaqueros and suffered their second upset of this young season, 13-0.
Last Thursday SMC was home again for the second home game of the season. The Alan Hancock College Bulldogs visited SMC.
SMC's softball team played the Bulldogs tight but lost once again by a score of 9-7 in extra innings.
From the start SMC was either tied or in the lead. It was not until the final inning that SMC let the game get away from them.
"I think it's 5,000 times better then what they did in the last games," said sophomore shortshop Amanda Salvestrini. "This is the closest we've been."
The visiting Bulldogs started the game off. The first two batters hit into groundouts while SMC freshman pitcher Michelle Sierra struck out the third batter for Hancock College.
"I think I did good pitching. I have to work on hitting my spots, but overall I think I did really good," Sierra said.
In the bottom of the first, SMC drew first blood. Freshman Mona Kamdjou led off with a walk. After two groundouts and a single by SMC, freshman Brenda Martinez hit a two-out single, which brought the go-ahead runs to give SMC an early 2-0 lead.
During the Bulldogs at bat in the top of the third inning they were able to score their first run of the game.
Julie Ortiz hit a single and stole second. Ortiz later stole third and was able to score when SMC's Salvestrini came over to cover third and was unable to handle the throw from catcher Martinez.
SMC's at bat in third resulted in two more runs for them. Salvestrini and freshman Georgina Marroquin both hit a one-run home run, which gave SMC a 4-1 lead.
In the fourth inning Angela Martinez of the visiting Bulldogs led off with a double.
After Martinez, Vanessa Acevedo was up and also hit a double. Martinez, trying to score from second, was out at the plate when the SMC's catcher put a tag on her after a guided-missile-like throw from Salvestrini.
Acevedo later scored when teammate Veronica Gonzalez hit a single. The Bulldogs had two more runners come across the plate to tie the game, due to smart base running and some errors by SMC.
In the bottom of the fifth, Salvestrini led off the inning with a double. She then went to third on a sacrificial bunt by Kamdjou. Sierra came up after the bunt and hit a two-run homer to give SMC their last lead of the game at 6-4.
In the sixth inning the Bulldogs once again were able to tie the game, this time at 6-6. Thanks to key hits by the visiting team and errors on the field by SMC, the Bulldogs were able to get two runs across to tie the game.
In the bottom of the seventh SMC had a chance to win their first game of the season. A couple of walks and a double led to bases loaded for SMC.All three of these runners were left on base, which meant extra innings.
In the eighth inning Hancock wasted no time getting to business. Off of several doubles the Bulldogs scored three times to take a three run lead 9-6.
SMC managed to score one run when the bases were loaded. A walk was given up by the Bulldogs pitcher, which allowed an SMC runner to score but an end result of a crushing 9-7 defeat.
"They played well, they played up to their potential and we made some mistakes," said Tamara Ivie head coach.
"We are playing as a team and we haven't been a team for a long time so I'm ecstatic with how they are with one another on and off the field."
Ivie said, "It's only going to get better."