GONZALES — After taking a 10-0 loss at Fredericksburg for Game 1 of a three-game series Thursday, the Lady Apaches needed a way to get baserunners and scratch out runs to force a Game 3. Unfortunately, Gonzales baserunners could not reach past second base in their 12-0 loss against the Lady Billies at home during Game 2 Friday night, ending the Lady Apaches’ softball season in the bidistrict round.
“Fredericksburg is a good team,” Gonzales Head Coach Sam White said after the game. “They hit the ball and they deserve to win. I thought we played good defense at times. Our pitching did well, we just made a couple of mistakes here and there. It kind of put us behind the eight ball.”
Starting the game was freshman pitcher Shelby Davis, who pitched four innings, giving up 11 hits, one walk and nine runs, six of which were earned, in the Friday loss.
The Lady Apache defense struggled in the first inning, ending the frame with three errors while Fredericksburg plated eight runners.
“I think we battled, but it’s difficult to try to win when you’re trying to scratch out baserunners,” White noted. “We get some people on but we just couldn’t get the timely hit that we needed. That hurts us, especially when you get behind, you get down early.”
Three batters reached second base for the Lady Apaches. With a player in scoring position, the team went a combined 0-5 with three strikeouts and a walk. Gonzales totaled two hits in the game, a fourth-inning single by Trinity Aguero and a fifth-inning dinger by Kayley Martinez.
But the defense improved, with the Lady Apaches giving up one error the last four innings of play.
“Tonight was just a reflection of the future,” White said of the young squad. “At the beginning of the game we’re already putting next year’s team in place.”
The Lady Apaches will lose two seniors, Haley Garza and Desaray Rodriguez. White described both seniors as having strong work ethic who will leave “a legacy of hard work [and] dedication to the program.”
“I think that’s the key to Haley Garza and Desaray, to just work hard from your freshman year to your senior year and never give up.”
Meanwhile, most of the team will return, including some late-season injuries that made an impact.
“Ashleigh Luensmann [a freshman] has been out three or four weeks with a pitching injury, [sophomore Sydney] Clack sprained her ankle so she was out,” White noted. “Those two girls will obviously be in the lineup next year. They were missed.”
Despite the early-playoff exit, White sees this year as a positive, especially for a team with a roster of six freshmen, five sophomores and three juniors.
“They had to fill eight seniors’ positions from last year and that’s good and bad,” White explained. “Bad in a sense that you got some shoes you got to fill. With no experience. But the good news is they all have varsity experience. That’s what I told them at the end of the game, they all have varsity experience, so they can build on that for next year and that’ll be huge.”
The Lady Apaches finish their season 10-24, 2-6 in district, good for fourth place.