MILLEDGEVILLE — In the season opener at home Tuesday afternoon, John Milledge Academy’s softball team did not disappoint despite coming up short of the win and falling 5-4 to Mount De Sales in a barnburner.
Leading the entire game, the Lady Trojans gave up two runs in the top of the seventh inning to give the Lady Cavaliers the edge.
“I think a few different calls, a few different situations going either way it would have been a different story,” Kori Pickowitz, head coach, said. “We didn’t capitalize on a few opportunities early when we had runners on, that we should have really jumped on, but overall I’m proud of the way we started. I mean, we came out ready to play; we just have to finish.”
With key plays from many girls in the season opener, Pickowitz was pleased with the team unity the girls displayed against the Lady Cavaliers.
“We can only move up from here. I feel like the girls came together as a team and played hard, and that’s all I really want as a coach, especially for our first game of the season, the season opener,” she said. “I’m proud of how everybody played, and I’m proud of everybody accepting their role today, and doing an outstanding job in that role. Ultimately, we’ve just got to keep working hard, keep coming at them and do the best we can.”
The Lady Trojans utilized many girls in their first game, which is a credit to their depth this season.
“We’re going to have a lot of options this year. When runners get on, we’re going to have people who are going to be smart base runners that are going to have opportunities to come in and run the bases for us just like they did today, people who are going to have opportunities to pinch hit, people who are going to have opportunities throughout the entire season,” Pickowitz said. “You know, it’s going to be for that particular game, who are the best nine that fit together at that particular time.”
Pitching a complete game, senior Kate Giddens led the way for JMA with more than half of her pitches as strikes.
“Kate pitched a phenomenal game,” Pickowitz said. “I think she had 66 percent of her pitches were strikes. That’s huge as a pitcher, pitching for seven innings in this heat.”
Following the contest, Pickowitz opted to credit the entire team for the close game against Mount De Sales, rather than singling any one player out.
“Really, I just want to focus on the unison right now, and just kind keep working on that unity moving forward from here,” she said.
JMA softball jumps back into action in the Piedmont tournament Thursday through Saturday, Aug. 8, 9 and 10.