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April 08, 2014 | 02:20 PMWILLIAMS BAY — There were a few issues at the Williams Bay High School softball diamond on Monday night — the scoreboard wouldn’t turn on, girls started for the Bulldogs that had never played competitive softball before and communication problems led to base-running miscues.
The Scoreboard was dead, but the Williams Bay girls weren’t.
Despite a few early-season miscues, the Bay defeated Kenosha Christian Life 13-3.
“I’m happy with the way we came out,” Kuespert said. “I’m happy with a win, there’s no bad win.”
Christian Life scored the first run in the top of the first inning, but the Bay responded with a run of their own to tie the game at 1-1. The Bulldogs opened up with 5 runs in the bottom of the second and Christian Life scored 1 run each in the third and fourth, but Williams Bay padded their lead with a 3-run fourth and a 4-run sixth.
Bay scored 13 runs off nine hits and committed two errors. Christian Life left more than a few runners stranded — they scored 3 runs off nine hits and made one error.
Freshman Bulldog Morgan Lippert had a solid varsity debut from the mound on Monday night. She threw seven strikeouts, walked one batter, gave up nine hits and two earned runs in six innings.
“I thought that Morgan threw pretty well,” Kuespert said. “It was her first start as a freshman. She had a little bit of nerves.”
Lippert made some noise on offense, too.
Lippert was two-for-two on three plate appearances — she hit a double, a single and a sacrifice fly. Lippert crossed the plate twice and had three RBIs.
Sophomore Erin Lippert and senior Haley Shea both had great nights from the plate as well. Erin Lippert went two-for-three in four plate appearances. She batted in 2 runs and scored one. Shea was two-for-three with a double and a single. She knocked in two RBIs and scored 2 runs.
“The kids know, we talked after the game, that even though it was 13-3, we have a long way to go,” Kuespert said. “We, by no means, are even close to where we need to be.”
Kuespert said that the girls need to work on base running — there was some miscommunication on offense. One Bulldog player needed to be told to take first after four called balls. Another was frantically waved back to first base in the second inning by a teammate who was standing on second with the bases loaded.
“We had a couple kids … in the lineup tonight that haven’t ever played,” Kuespert said. “We need to work on some base running things. We need to work on communication.”
Monday was the first time the Bulldogs were able to play on their own field this spring — lingering snow and poor weather prevented outdoor practice over the past few weeks.
“So we had a lot of just the common early season things that just went wrong,” Kuespert said. “You know, (we’re) not quite sure where we need to be on the field, that’s defensive positioning. (We had) trouble fielding the ground ball on occasion. We haven’t fielded a ground ball from dirt yet this spring. Those are the kinds of things that hopefully will just work themselves out as the season goes.”
But Kuespert saw a few positives as well — the kids were aggressive on offense. The girls had around three or four strikeouts on Monday, Kuespert said, but none of them struck out looking.
“We were aggressive at the plate, we were aggressive on the bases,” Kuespert said. “Those are things that we like to do. As a program we preach, aggressive, aggressive, aggressive. Put the ball in play, make things happen. I say that all the time.”
The Bulldogs will host Rio at 5 p.m. on Friday.
“We’ve got a lot of work to do before we’re even close to where we need to be,” Kuespert said.