BRYN ATHYN >> Abington Friends School took the field Friday afternoon against Friends SchoolS League opponent Academy of the New Church down its starting third and first basemen. For a team already void of a lot of varsity experience, the loss of the two starters was greatly felt.
The Kangaroos committed eight errors as they conceded to ANC 15-0 in four innings. ANC lead off hitter and pitcher Stevie Murphy grounded out to the pitcher her first two at-bats, which stood as the only two ground outs recorded by AFS.
“Just a lack of effort and a hesitation almost with knowing where to go,” AFS coach Maria Savarese said of the errors. “Defensive is 75 percent of what we practice and I don’t want to attribute it to just missing two seniors today but two seniors were missing today.”
While Murphy did not have a stellar day at the plate she did off the rubber. The righty pitched a complete-game shutout, striking out six.
“Stevie Murphy did another nice job,” ANC coach Len Rose said. “With the cold weather the players stayed focused which is good because it’s the kind of day where they could lose focus.”
To add insult to injury for the ‘Roos, starting pitcher Paige Stanton was pulled with a sore hip. Stanton was holding strong through her two innings of work despite the defensive struggles behind her.
As AFS was struggling to make plays in the field, it was just what the doctor ordered for ANC, which has been experiencing some offensive troubles, particularly in the middle of its lineup. The Lions got the bats going and ran the bases aggressively in the early going to build up the big lead.
“The hitters haven’t really been getting going because of the cold weather so we wanted them to be ahead in the count to be aggressive,” Rose said. “The middle of our lineup has been struggling. I think its weather related, a lot of them don’t like to hit in cold weather so we wanted to give them a chance to swing the bat today.”
AFS struggled to put things together consistently. The ‘Roos plate approach wasn’t bad they just couldn’t put at bats together and much of that had to do with the pitching of Murphy.
For ANC, it now pulls its record to above .500 standing a 3-2 with a 1-1 mark in the league with AFS now falling to 1-2 as it looks to make head way with an improving team.