WINDHAM — This was the type of performance Bedford softball coach Jay Brewster has been waiting for all season.
Throughout the first half of the campaign, Bedford has played somewhat pedestrian, attaining as many wins as they have losses.
A team that regularly places high expectations on itself, the Bulldogs, perhaps, put forth their best effort of the season thus far, topping red-hot Windham 8-4 on Wednesday.
“When the weather is nice like today, the girls seen to hit the ball well,” said Brewster. “They hit the ball hard. Once its starts rolling then it continues to roll. This is a big win for us here but we have some important games still ahead of us. From what I saw today, I think this is the way these girls are capable of playing.”
Bedford racked up 13 hits against three Jaguars pitchers, while playing error-free on the defensive side to improve to 8-7. Down a run early, the Bulldogs plated two runs in the third and added three more in the fourth to seal the deal.
Winning pitcher Madison Fraitzl allowed 11 hits, but continued to limit the damage when the Jaguars had runners on base. The senior was also aided by some strong defensive play behind her.
Trailing 3-2 after two innings, RBIs from Katherine Sasso and Amelia Edwards off of Windham starter Amelia Williamson pushed Bedford in front to stay in the third. Williamson would be lifted in favor of Jasmine Moskowitz. However, the sophomore also found the terrain rough.
In the Bulldogs’ fourth, a single by Erica Barley (2 hits) was followed up shortly thereafter by a Morgan Fraitzl (2 hits) double to make it 5-3.
Bedford continued its aggressiveness at the plate as Madison Lucontoni doubled in Fraitzl and Whitney Fitzgerald singled her home moments later, putting the Bulldogs ahead 7-3.
“We knew Windham had a good team,” Morgan Fraitzl said. “We came in knowing we had to play our best game. Lately we haven’t been putting hits together but today we did that.”
Coming in riding a four-game winning streak, Windham (12-5), continued to put runners on base but failed to bring them home. The Jaguars stranded nine, including four in scoring position.
“Bedford hit balls where we were not,” said Windham coach Dave Hedge. “Give them credit. At times we hit the ball hard, but in most cases it was right at somebody. Their balls fell and ours didn’t. But I’m not upset with this loss whatsoever.”
Bedford added a solo run in the top of the seventh against third pitcher Abby Bedient on a Morgan Fraitzl sacrifice fly. Bedient, Windham’s normal starter, pitched 3 2/3 innings, allowing three hits and striking out nine. The Jaguars managed a run in the bottom of the inning, Larissa Piessens RBI single, before Madison Fraitzl closed things out. Elise Buchanan also collected two hits in the victory.
The Bulldogs jumped out to a 2-0 first-inning lead following a pair of run-scoring singles off the bats of Madison Fraitzl and Caitlyn LeMay (3 hits). Windham responded in its half of the first thanks to a two-run home run by junior Aislinn Milner (4-for-4). The Jaguars took a brief lead the next frame on Leeten Adolt’s RBI double.