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UWRF softball team plays 10 games in the Florida sun

March 25, 2015

The UW-River Falls softball team was able to catch some sun as well as softballs over spring break as the team traveled to Orlando, Florida, to play 10 games.

The softball team managed to split its games as they finished the trip with five wins and five losses. There were two games everyday with one off day. Playing so many games in a short period of time can be difficult and tiring, but Head Coach Faye Perkins was pleased about the way things turned out.

“It’s a jammed packed eight days,” Perkins said. “I am happy about the way we played, but there were a couple of games that I think we could’ve done a lot better.”

The Falcons faced off against the number one team in the nation Tuffs University out of Medford, Massachusetts. Going into the game, Tuffs pitcher Allyson Fournier had an 7-0 record and had not given up an earned run all season. But in the sixth inning, senior Abbie Morris cracked a double to right center field and Hannah Zurn scored. The Falcons ended up losing the game 2-1, but Perkins said that she was pleased with the team effort.

Perkins said she loves to play games in Florida, in part because of the weather as well as some of the experience some of the younger players get playing at the college level.

“It’s always interesting to see some of the first year players get an opportunity to play in Florida,” Perkins said.

A few freshman stepped up for the Falcons and Perkins said she was very happy with their performance. Freshman outfielder Shannan Borchardt hit .417 with a home run during the ten games. Freshman outfielder Aiyana Ledwein started a majority of the games in the outfield and batted .375.

While the Falcons were in Florida the team stayed in condos, each condo housed seven players. This provided players with additional time to get to know each other.

“It’s great for the team to get to know each other — the team chemistry, the bonding that happens when you’re living together for eight days,” Perkins said.

Perkins said that of the 22 players, 16 brought their families along for the games. Perkins said that they all had a great time and that they had a few pot lucks, where everyone feasted and laughed.

You might assume that in-between games that the Falcons were frolicking in the sun or driving around looking at the attractions, but Perkins said that there was not a lot of time for that.

“We focus on softball,” Perkins said.

On their off day Perkins let the players do what they wanted, some laid out by the water or went shopping or looked at tourist attractions.

A few team goals that the Falcons have this season is to have a batting average above .300, and the team currently has a .295 average. Defensively the Falcons want a fielding percentage better than .960, and it currently sits at .943. Perkins expects the numbers to get better as the season progresses.

Perkins is optimistic that the weather will allow the Falcons to play a pair of double headers before its WIAC home opener against UW-Whitewater on April 3.