BRISTOL – After dropping its first game of the season 11-1, the Bristol Eastern softball team regrouped with an impressive 3-1 win against Southington on Wednesday.
The Lancers trailed 1-0 until Alexandra Shorette smacked a bases-loaded single up the middle, scoring two runs in the bottom of the fourth inning.
Bristol Eastern did not surrender the lead the rest of the way en route to its first win of the year.
“It’s hard to have that kind of start to the year and to get them to refocus at practice and especially with who we had on deck, that was a challenge,” Lancers coach Scott Redman said. “I got to applaud the girls, they came and they practiced really well. We had two really good practices the last two days and they responded.”
Berlin handed Bristol Eastern the lopsided loss over the weekend, but Wednesday’s victory suddenly puts that performance in the rear-view mirror.
“It feels good,” Lancers starting pitcher Alison Tellier said. “I feel like we came off of a big loss and brought us down a bit, but I feel like this win really is going to bring our confidence up as a team and just overall from Saturday to here, I think we’ve all just come together a bit more working together as a team and picking everyone up.”
The Blue Knights took the early lead after Ashlyn Desaulniers reached base on a walk. Desaulniers eventually scored on a pass ball later in the inning.
Neither team could muster much offense until the fourth when Bristol Eastern snatched the lead from the visitors.
Riley Giblin started the Lancers’ comeback effort with a leadoff walk, then Jasmine Perez punched a single through, followed by another walk, which loaded the bases for Shorette.
Ashley Serafin immediately gave Bristol Eastern some insurance when she drove in Jazmyn Browne on a fielder’s choice infield RBI to make it 3-1.
“Just having them back to back really helped everyone get up and brought everyone a more positive mindset and helped us just finish the game as like one,” Tellier said.
“Timely hitting is the name of the game,” Redman said. “Softball is usually such a low scoring game, this was a pretty high-level game today. Timely hits make it happen. Big hit what can I say. [Shorette] squeaks it through the middle, scores two runs.
“Got to tip your cap, big time hitting in a pressure spot,” Redman said.
Southington had chances to tie the game in the fifth and seventh innings, but never managed to bring any more runs in.
“They did a really good job keeping us off balance at the plate,” Blue Knights coach Davina Hernandez said. “Definitely have a lot to work on as a team but I thought our pitcher Julia pitched a really good game. They had some really timely hitting and we didn’t.
“We got to get base runners on if we expect to score,” Hernandez said. “I thought she did a really nice job on the mound, but we made a couple mistakes in that [fourth] inning and it cost us. They played better than us today.”
Julia Panarella pitched a complete game for Southington and allowed all three runs while striking out 11 batters and giving up three walks.
Bristol Eastern got a gutsy performance on the mound from Tellier, who also went the whole way, with one run allowed, six strikeouts and five walks.
The Lancers received a double from Janessa Gonzalez, serving as the only extra-base hit of the contest.
Bristol Eastern out-hit the Blue Knights, 5-1, with Desaulniers recording Southington’s one hit.
The Lancers (1-1) will visit Windsor next on Monday, Apr. 19 at 3:45 p.m., while the Blue Knights (1-1) will host South Windsor on Apr. 19 at 3:45 p.m.
“We got Windsor next, who is right there with Southington so we don’t get to rest,” Redman said. “I told them, you can enjoy it tonight, tomorrow we get back to work and refocus cause Windsor’s not going to let you sleep either. You got to come with this focus every day.”
Ryan Ames can be reached at 860-801-5094 or on Twitter @_RyanAmes.
Bristol Eastern 3, Southington 1
At Bristol Eastern
Southington 100 000 0 -- 1 1 2
Bristol Eastern 000 300 x -- 3 5 2
W -- Alison Tellier (1-1); L -- Julia Panarella.
2B -- Janessa Gonzalez (BE).
Records: Bristol Eastern (1-1); Southington (1-1).