Glen Burnie softball coach Bob Broccolino had planned to give his girls off today if they played well at Northeast yesterday.
Forget the day off; the Gophers will practice this afternoon.
"I can't accept the way they played," Broccolino said after his No. 2-ranked Gophers dropped a 3-0 decision to No. 3 Northeast in Pasadena. "When you play for Glen Burnie, you have to reach for higher goals than this. They know they didn't play well, and they're too good of a team to accept playing that way."
Just a week ago Monday, the Gophers (6-2 overall and league) nipped the Eagles (7-2, 6-2) at home, 1-0, but in Anne Arundel softball, teams that play "that way," meaning making mental and physical mistakes, usually come up on the short end.
Glen Burnie took advantage of the pitching of Denise Schultheis last week and made a first-inning run stand up against the Eagles.
Yesterday Schultheis, who scattered five hits a week ago, pitched well again, giving up four hits with three strikeouts, but Rachel Herrick was a little better on a two-hitter with four strikeouts.
"It's a crazy league, great competition for the playoffs," said Northeast coach Marianne Schultz. "It usually comes down to one little thing, not getting the bunt down or missing a signal. Execution was on our side today."
Schultheis proved to be her own worst enemy by walking the leadoff batters in the first and third innings and both scored, the first on a mental error, the second on a physical one.
"Denise had good stuff, but you can't afford to walk the first batter," said Broccolino.
Renee Springston led off the Eagles' first with a walk. With two outs, Stephanie Adams singled on a hit-and-run down the left-field line to score Springston on a bizarre play. With Springston speeding into third base, left fielder Erin Thomas' throw was caught by Stephanie Stoll with her back to Springston.
Shultz alertly waved Springston on as Stoll swept a tag at the air expecting an overrun of the bag only to discover that Springston had never stopped and was headed home.
Stoll's throw was too late as Springston slid under the tag.