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Arlington Eagles shut out defending 2A state champs | Fastpitch
ARLINGTON — The Lady Eagles overcame line-up confusion, a makeshift infield defense and a two-hit output to get their first softball win of the season March 17.
The old adage of 'a win is a win' certainly fits the description for Arlington (1-1), especially when defeating a defending Class 2A state champion in an exhibition game.
"It's a great building tool for us," said Arlington coach Dan Eng after a 1-0 victory over Burlington-Edison. "As a young team, this is a real confidence builder."
The young Eagles team played like experienced upperclassmen, getting the exact play needed in most potentially troublesome situations whether it be a diving catch to save a run or a ground ball out at third base with runners on the corners.
"That kind of thing just builds as the game goes on," said Arlington senior pitcher Jocelyn Probert.
Probert out-dueled the Tigers' ace Lindsey Dawson to the tune of seven shutout innings, scattering eight hits and striking out four.
The sole run came in the fourth inning, and it all stated with freshman Veronica Ladines' fielder's choice.
"The pitch was a little high," said Ladines, who tapped the ball to the first base side of the infield. "I was trying to get a walk because (Dawson) had already walked a couple of girls."
Dawson was dominant at times, but showed rust in others, allowing just two hits while striking out five and walking five.
After getting on, Ladines made the difference in the game with her base running. The freshman left fielder caught Burlington off guard by stealing second, and then distracted the Tigers' shortstop into making a throwing error on the ensuing play, resulting in runners on first and third with just one out.
Kirstin Wright then grounded out to the shortstop, allowing Ladines enough time to score.
"Thank goodness we lucked out today," Eng said. "On any given day, we might not have won this game."
Arlington simply made fewer mistakes, which kept pressure on B-E on a number of innings despite a lack of hits. Through the handful of walks and three errors, the Eagles had runners on in all but the third inning.
The Tigers did not commit an error, and flashed the leather in the diamond, despite Eng not starting a few of his regulars due to injuries — and all but one playing a different position. He praised Lindsey Turner — normally his second base starter – who made a shutout-saving dive while playing the hot corner.
There was also a bit of line-up confusion in the game, as the Eagles submitted different orders to the ump and the opposition, but not affecting the outcome.