On the bright side, all four games the Ridgefeld High softball team has played this season have been winnable. But following an 11-8 non-conference loss at Newtown on Saturday afternoon, the Tigers have yet to get into the win column.
Ridgefield battled back from a 4-2 deficit to take a 6-4 lead, only to see the Nighthawks score one run in the fifth and six more in the sixth to seize a five-run lead.
The Tigers scratched and clawed for two runs in the top of the seventh, but couldn’t even the score. Newtown got the last out with the bases loaded.
“It’s OK when the other team beats you. It’s harder when you beat yourselves. … that’s what I feel like we did today,” Ridgefield coach Lauren Greywacz said.
In Newtown’s big sixth inning, the Tigers did not commit an official error, but there were some mental mistakes in that frame and in other times during the game, Greywacz said.
Against Staples in the season opener, Ridgefield scored eight runs in its final at-bat to tie the game before losing in extra innings. Down 11-6 on Saturday, the Tigers displayed more of that comeback mentality.
Skylar Arent, Makena Skrobar and Alyssa DeStefano had consecutive singles to begin the top of the seventh, loading the bases for Ridgefield.
With one out, Lauren Bayer worked the count full before delivering a hit to left that scored a run and reloaded the bases.
After a sacrifice fly by Mikayla Melahn made it 11-8, Sabrina Grizzaffi followed with a hard single to left, again filling the bases. But Newtown got a strikeout to stop the rally and end the game.
Newtown’s six-run sixth inning included only two hits out of the infield. The rest of the damage came via infield hits, walks, and two fielder’s choice plays.
“They put the ball in play; they put pressure on the bases. We weren’t intense and aggressive enough to make the plays we should have,” Greywacz said. “Every out has to be like the final out. Every out has to be played the same way.”
DeStefano started the game in the circle for the Tigers and got through the first inning unscathed. Arent came on in relief to begin the fourth and was replaced in the sixth, with DeStefano returning to pitch.
Arent inherited a 6-4 lead and kept it that way until the fifth when Newtown scored one run.
A walk and two infield singles set the table in the fifth. Arent nearly pitched out of trouble but was victimized by a wild pitch, making the score 6-5.
Down 2-0 in the third, Ridgefield scored four runs. RBI singles by Grizzaffi and Arent and a two-run base hit by Julia Clavi gave the visitors a 4-2 lead.
After Newtown tied the game, Ridgefield scored twice in the fourth. A leadoff double by DeStefano and a single off the bat of Claire Filaski put runners on the corners. After a pair of strikeouts, a wild pitch scored pinch-runner Melissa Harris and gave Ridgefield a 5-4 lead. Grizzaffi followed with an RBI triple for a 6-4 advantage.