The baseball and softball teams have not performed as well as they have in previous years, yet their captains and coaches expect a successful remainder of the season. Though each team has won only a single game each, the players are undeterred.
Softball coaches Rebecca Melvoin and Danielle Chagnon foresaw difficulty from the start of the season as the team lacked both size and age. “With small numbers, we knew we would have to get back to the basics and we were prepared for the hard work ahead,” said Ms. Melvoin.
One cause of the team’s losing streak is the repetition of basic errors during games.
“Some errors we are working on include hitting more consistently, making good decisions in the batter’s box, and rebounding from errors in the game,” Ms. Melvoin explained.
Junior Co-Captain Hannah Insuik’s goal for the team is to avoid losing games by the “mercy rule,” which ends the game because one team is ahead by so much.
“I want us to play the whole game instead of losing by 15 runs. I hope to make cleaner plays, keep our confidence, and avoid strikeouts,” Insuik said.
Nevertheless, the softball team is one of most well-bonded on campus. The team’s creed is to have fun and not take themselves too seriously when making mistakes. “Our team gets along so well, and that’s what helps us gets through our games. We’re able to have fun because it is a game, and we play to love it, not to win every game,” said Insuik.
On the Headmaster’s Field, meanwhile, varsity baseball Co-Captain Nolan Doyle ’12 and head coach David Irwin also hope for a stronger end to the season, in spite of their losing record.
The team struggled in its first few games against other schools.
“We knew we would have a core of strong hitters and pitchers. The suspect area would likely be with our fielding. We had difficulty with the gloves, and struggled to put together seven innings of clean ball,” Doyle said.
Mr. Irwin believes that the team’s losses can be attributed to its difficulty in putting together the three major facets of the game: pitching, defense, and offense. “When we get a great pitching outing, we can’t seem to score runs. When we score runs, we make too many errors in the field,” said Mr. Irwin.
Mr. Irwin hopes for the team to gain more faith in itself to stay competitive for the remainder of the season.
“The challenge for us is to keep believing in the team; to know that we are a team who will keep scratching, clawing, and fighting from the first pitch to the last out. No one can challenge the tenacity, perseverance, and commitment that the team has displayed this year,” he said.
Doyle enthusiastically added, “You can rest assured that Deerfield baseball is a team on the rise. We took our first league victory on April 28 against Exeter. We liked the taste of victory, but we’re still hungry.”