It was the second pitch Granby senior Abby Kidd threw, a screwball that she didn’t get quite right. Somers leadoff batter Madison Hinkley hit the ball over the left field fence.
“I kind of knew when I pitched it,” Kidd said. “I was like, ‘Dang.’”
And so the Granby softball team, undefeated, found itself trailing by a run after the first batter Monday. But the Bears weren’t fazed. Lexi Nichols hit two home runs and had three RBI, Kayla Davis had three RBI and Kidd settled down and struck out 14 en route to a 9-2 win over Somers in an NCCC game.
“I actually did like the first inning,” Granby coach Brian McDermott said. “I liked the fact we got to see a little adversity. If you’re going to get your bell rung, get it rung early.
“It’s called a wakeup call. The spot wasn’t right there. But [Kidd] bounced right back. And then we bounced back.”
Kidd, a senior who pitched back-to-back perfect games earlier in the season and will play at Rhode Island College next year, had a one-hitter through the fifth inning. She ended up giving up six hits for the Bears (11-0). But her defense made no errors and her offense supplied 14 hits.
“She was throwing that riseball pretty well today,” Somers coach Melanie Zamorski said. “We were having a hard time laying off that.”
In the third inning, Iris Rooney, who had three hits and two RBI, singled and scored when Kidd singled sharply down the third base line. Nichols hit her first home run of the season in the third inning to drive home Kidd to give Granby a 3-1 lead.
“I knew I had to pull through when they scored first,” Nichols said. “I didn’t expect them to score first, the first batter of the game hitting a home run. Instead of getting down about it, we all decided to get hyped up and come back.”
Granby got two more runs in the fourth inning then Nichols hit a solo shot to center in the fifth to give the Bears a 6-1 lead.
“Granby always has a solid team,” Zamorski said. “We knew it was going to be a tough game today. We had to play kind of a perfect game today to keep up. We knew Granby was going to hit. We were ready for that.”
Hinckley led Somers (9-2) with two hits, the home run and a single in the sixth.
Somers was the 2019 Class S champion. Much of that team graduated, although one key returnee was pitcher Emily Reynolds, who got the loss Monday.
“It’s a good learning experience,” Zamorski said. “I have three kids who played varsity for me on this team in 2019. They didn’t get that playing time last year. While they’re juniors, they’re a younger team.”
Lori Riley can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.