BHS softball

BHS junior Khala Porter (right) waits for the ball to leave the Rutland pitcher’s hand before getting a lead off first in Wednesday’s home opener. Porter reached base twice in the loss, once on an error then later on a hit.

The Baldwin High School softball team had a rough go of it in their home opener Tuesday.

Bravettes softball, one of three BHS fall sports programs playing a region-only schedule due to COVID, dropped the region contest to visiting Rutland 19-1. 

Baldwin head coach Charlene Dunn’s girls were in the game through two innings down just 4-1, but a 15-run explosion in the third allowed the Lady Canes to head back to Macon early with the region victory.

“We don’t know how to fight through adversity,” a disheartened Dunn said after the loss. “We made a few errors, and because of that the girls gave up.”

Rutland totaled 10 hits in the huge third inning but was occasionally helped along by the troubled Baldwin defense. 

“I was thinking about calling timeout, but I don’t know what I would have said,” added Dunn. “We say the same stuff at practice every day. We’ve got to get more fundamentally sound. That’s what I preach to them, and that’s what we do at practice, but it’s just not translating onto the game field.”

The visitors plated one run in the first, but it could have been much worse. They had the bases loaded with no outs before a sacrifice fly and pair of groundouts to third and second ended the frame. Baldwin was able to answer that early challenge in the bottom half after sophomore leadoff hitter Skye Ford smacked a single into right. She would soon after steal second and move over to third on an error. Ford finished her circuit when the Rutland pitcher tried to catch her off the bag, but a poor throw over allowed the Bravette to score what would be her team’s only run of the hot afternoon. 

Baldwin is playing in a new region this season, and the softball team has so far been rudely welcomed by its Region 4-4A opponents as the Bravettes (0-2) previously lost their season opener at Perry 11-0. Dunn knew the new competition would be tough for her team, especially after the losses it suffered to graduation and players opting not to come out this year. Rutland, a AAA school last year, won its region each of the last two years.  

“We are in a harder region, and I think Rutland is going to be one of the top teams,” Dunn said. “I told the girls it was going to be a lot of competition.”

BHS softball will try to get into the win column Tuesday when the team hosts Howard High School. First pitch is scheduled for 5 p.m.

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