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The week began nicely for the Woodridge softball team as the Bulldogs won a 2-1, nine-inning thriller April 27 over Portage Trail Conference Metro Division rival Cloverleaf.
It was downhill from there, however.
Woodridge lost 7-1 to Warren Howland and 16-0 to Massillon Perry -- both non-conference games -- April 28 in the Grand Slam Tournament in Akron.
On May 2, the Bulldogs lost 4-3 at home to PTC Metro foe Norton and, the next day, on May 3 lost 9-2 to the same Panthers, this time at Norton.
The game site against Cloverleaf was switched from Cuyahoga Falls to Lodi due to Woodridge's field being too wet. Thus the Bulldogs acted as the home team.
Woodridge took a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the fifth inning. The Colts tied the score in the seventh. Junior second baseman Cassie Riebau scored all the way from first base for the winning run due to a throwing error.
Sophomore Caitlin Raid went the distance, striking out 6 and walking only 1.
"Our defense behind Caitlin was solid," Woodridge head coach Dan Schneider said.
Junior first baseman Sydney Shaheen had two doubles. Raid had two singles and an RBI.
The loss to Howland was played at Firestone Stadium. The Tigers scored two runs in the top of the third, two in the fifth and three in the seventh.
"Their pitcher threw us off because, even though she didn't throw hard, she threw with a lot of movement. She kept us off balance," said Schneider. "We also had bad pitch selection at the plate. We just weren't hitting the ball hard."
Riebau tripled, senior shortstop Mackenzie Mercer doubled and Shaheen singled.
Raid went the distance.
The loss to Perry, played at the Pony Field next to Firestone Stadium, was about as one-sided as it can get.
The Panthers scored 2 runs in the top of the first, 4 in the third, 2 in the fourth and 8 in the fifth.
"Perry is a very good team," Schneider said.
Mercer and junior catcher Sage Jenkins each singled, which was all Woodridge was able to muster.
Freshman Kilah Neal got the start and went 4 2/3 innings before running into trouble in the fifth. Raid came on to get the final out of that inning, and junior Sophia DeBord pitched the final two frames.
In the first loss to Norton, Woodridge trailed 4-0 heading into the bottom of the sixth. That's when the Bulldogs plated their 3 runs.
"If it wasn't for a base running snafu, we would've had a chance to tie the game that inning," the coach said.
Jenkins had 2 singles and scored a run.
Riebau, junior third baseman Emily Mally and senior outfielder Mary Bates each singled and knocked in a run. Mally also scored once. Mercer singled and scored a run.
The second loss to Norton was all Panthers from the start; they scored 4 runs in the bottom of the first, 2 in the second, 1 in the third and 2 in the sixth. They amassed 18 hits off of Raid, who went the distance, fanning 3.
"Caitlin wasn't on her 'A' game and Norton took advantage of it," said Schneider.
Mercer doubled and singled and scored a run.
Mally had 2 singles and an RBI, Shaheen singled and had an RBI and Raid scored a run.
Woodridge record stood at 9-12 overall record and 5-6 in the PTC Metro.
The Bulldogs are scheduled to play back-to-back games against conference foe Springfield May 8 in Lakemore and May 9 at home. First pitch for both contests is set for 4:30 p.m.
On May 11 Woodridge, seeded fourth, is scheduled to host fifth-seeded Streetsboro at 4:30 p.m. in an Akron Division II sectional final. Both teams received first-round byes.