The Tiverton softball team lost to Narragansett, 12-2, in their first Division III home game on Friday afternoon. Narragansett scored 10 runs in the top of the 8th inning with the score tied, 2-2, …
The Tiverton softball team lost to Narragansett, 12-2, in their first Division III home game on Friday afternoon. Narragansett scored 10 runs in the top of the 8th inning with the score tied, 2-2, after regulation.
“We played as hard as we could,” said Tigers head coach Cory Motta. “I’m proud of the girls. We played seven great innings of very high level softball. In extra innings we ran out of gas. They are a great team and took advantage of it. It was a great and fun game to be apart of. My girls have nothing to hang their heads about. We will see them again.”
Tigers junior pitcher Grace Plourde cruised through seven innings, compiling 10 strikeouts, 2 hits and 2 earned runs. She worked fast and well with sophomore catcher Paige Peace-Fortin. In the eighth Plourde hit the first batter and began to tug at her arm, Coach Motta said.
“Grace was tremendous. She wanted to keep throwing, but we wanted to be careful.”
Coach Motta replaced her with senior pitcher Savannah Goss.
“It was a tough spot,” said Coach Motta. It was a cold evening. Savannah did her job and threw strikes. Narragansett just started to find the holes and opened up on us.”
The game started off great for the Tigers. With two out in the second inning, junior DH Emily Oakes tattooed a 2-1 pitch over the left centerfield fence to give Tiverton a 1-0 lead.
Coach Motta had been platooning Oakes at catcher but felt that the players could help the team better if they were both in the lineup. “Emily had been hitting the ball well in scrimmage games,” said Coach Motta. “We need her bat in the line up.”
Tiverton struck for another run in the fifth. Senior shortstop Mackenzie Kiley, singled with two outs, stole second and scored on a double by Plaude to give the Tigers a 2-0 lead. Kiley went 2 for 4 during the game. Defensively, she also snared a ball up the middle, to save a run.
“Mackenzie is a tremendously talented player,” said Coach Motta. “She’s a great leader and great with the younger kids. She’s very positive and she has great ability to make spectacular plays in the field.”
Meanwhile Plourde pitched lights out with 7 strikeouts through 5 innings. She held Narragansett hitless until the sixth when they scored 2 runs to tie the score, 2-2. A Narragansett blast to center field sent a runner rounding third base and heading home. Morgan Rodrigues picked the ball up on the bounce and fired the ball home to Tigers catcher Peace-Fortin and she tagged the Narragansett runner out.
But Couto inadvertently got in the runner’s way as she rounded third base and obstruction was called.
“Morgan made a beautiful throw,” said Coach Motta. “Paige made a great play at the plate. She did a great job, sticking strikes and blocking balls in the dirt.”
“I was happy that we defensively executed the play,” Coach Motta said. “It was a great throw on the money. Paige smothered the ball and made a great tag. As for obstruction — “It’s just softball and we’ll learn from that.”
“The atmosphere was great,” the coach said. “It felt like a playoff game rather than the first game of year.”
“We had plenty of chances to win the game,” he added. “There are 24 outs in a game and they did a better job than we did.”
Senior shortstop Mackenzie Kiley and senior second baseman Michaela Andrews made a lot of huge plays defensively for us,” said coach Motta. “Andrews is a rock solid steady player. She’s smart and is always where she needs to be.”
Coach Motta moved Andrews from third to second base. “I felt like with her skill set, second base would be a good fit for her and she’s one of our best defensive players.”
Tiverton had two hitters step up to the plate to win the game with a man on second base.
“They hit two line drives,” said Coach Motta. Narragansett made the plays that they had too. I can’t ask for anything more than what the girls gave me.”
This is Coach Motta’s first season as head coach of the Tiverton girls softball team — he actually started as coach in 2020, but the season was cancelled. “I’m just glad that they are out there,” he said.
He coached travel softball for years in the Fall River area and founded the Fall River Force, a travel softball team.
“These are the type of kids I like to coach,” said Coach Motta. “They are willing to learn and are a great bunch of kids. I’m glad to see them return and regain their life’s momentum. Last year put a pause on all of that. It’s was great to see them out there enjoying each other and having fun.”