The Bucs have had their struggles so far this softball season. Before heading into the Eagles Classic in Morehead, Kentucky, they had a losing record. The Bucs looked to use this tournament to get back in the right direction.
“We have been working on consistency,” said Head Coach Brad Irwin. “We have not done a good job of making offensive adjustments or pitching.”
Despite the slow start, the Bucs have shown moments of their championship play from last season.
“We have competed hard, we never feel we are out of a game,” said Irwin. “We have been able to hit some clutch hits at times when we needed to come back in some games.”
The Bucs first game of the Eagles Classic was against Toledo. After a scoreless first inning and allowing two runs the Bucs responded with two runs in the second inning. Toledo, however, scored eight runs throughout the next five innings.
After the fifth inning, the Bucs trailed 8-5. Down three, however, their offense was not able to make a run at a comeback.
Through three innings, senior Madison Ogle (Maryville, Tennessee) struck out seven batters. She had some struggles but the Bucs will be counting on her the majority of the season.
Next, the Bucs faced Morehead State who came into the matchup with a 15-5 record. Both teams started the first two innings scorelessly. It wasn’t until a home run to bring in a runner gave Morehead State a two-run lead.
The Bucs responded when Taylor Wright (Erwin, Tennessee) hit a home run to bring in a runner tying the game. In the eighth inning, the Bucs offense was able to secure the win, scoring two runs to win the game 4-2. Ogle allowed one hit in her two innings pitching and threw three strikeouts.
“Offensively we have to have a better understanding of what we want to do inside the box,” said Irwin. “Pitching-wise, I think Madison Ogle has been good, we need our other pitchers to step up.”