XENIA—The Xenia High School Buccaneers softball team failed to hold on to an early lead against the Fairmont Firebirds. The Bucs gave up six unanswered runs resulting in a 6-3 loss, and dropping them to 11-7 on the year.
“They got some late hits when they needed them,” Xenia coach John Miner said. “The team has some really good hitters and they got it done late.”
Despite the loss, Xenia junior Caity Moody had a big game. She helped the Bucs (11-7, 6-4 Greater Western Ohio Conference South) secure seven of the team’s first nine outs from third base before being moved to pitcher. She also hit a single and scored one of the team’s three runs.
“She comes out and does her job game after game, no matter where I put her,” Miner said. “She’s got a big bat and big glove. We are lucky we get to have her one more year here.”
Through the first three innings, Fairmont (9-8, 4-6 GWOC East) struggled at the plate. Multiple hits would go straight down the line to Moody at third base for an easy out. Fairmont coach Michael Hennessy said he instructed the girls to wait a second longer to swing.
“We were early on our swings and we weren’t adjusting our timing on the pitches quick enough,” Hennessy said. “By the time we went through the batting lineup a second time, our batters adjusted.”
The adjustment paid off as Fairmont slowly started chipping away at the Xenia lead. The Firebirds scored at least one run in each of the final four innings to secure the win.
“This group of kids are really close knit,” Hennessy said. “The girls really get each other fired up and they know we are never out of a game.”
Miner said his team needed to work on their mentality and ability to shake things off when they don’t go their way.
“We have to control the game and not let it control us,” Miner said. “When they score or get a hit, we have to forget it and move on to the next batter.”
The Bucs will look to mentally hit the reset button and focus on what Miner described as a must-win home game against Vandalia Butler at 5 p.m. on Friday, April 26. Fairmont will host Northmont that same day.
Joshua Woolverton is a student intern for Greene County News from Cedarville University.