College of DuPage's Student Newspaper

The Courier

College of DuPage's Student Newspaper

The Courier

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Chaparral Softball Splits on Sophomore Day

COD recognized their sophomores and rallied to win their second game after dropping the first against Moraine Valley.
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Rachel Wagner

The College of DuPage softball team celebrated their sophomores on April 21 at home against Moraine Valley Community College. The Chaparrals tried their best to keep up offensively, but their struggles in the circle helped build the Cyclones’ lead. Unable to find the strike zone, COD fell to Moraine 18-10 in their first game of the doubleheader.

Game two started similarly until COD exploded in the third inning, scoring 10 runs to take an 18-12 lead. The pitching struggles fell on the Cyclones, and the Chaps continued to hit well. COD ended game two 24-14 in five innings, splitting their sophomore day doubleheader to make their record 10-15.

“It’s pretty exciting,” assistant softball coach James Jonaitis said. “The girls never quit, even during the first game. The second game, they came back and played really hard. They hit the ball how they can, and that was really cool.”

Freshman utility Cadee Baker cheers with her team in the dugout after making it to third base. (Rachel Wagner)

Sophomore outfielder Yuliana Salgado had a day at the plate, smacking a three-run homer to notch her fourth home run of the season in game one. In game two, she swatted another three-run homer for number five on the season. In eight at-bats, Salgado totaled five hits, four runs and nine RBIs. She also struck out twice and walked once. She said the home runs were nice, but her priority is to get base hits for the team.

“I was just trying to make contact and do the best I can,” Salgado said. “I try not to get in my head about it. I just want to keep going. It feels good, but all that matters is that I get a base hit. I do it for my team.”

Sophomore outfielder Grace Walker pitched nine total innings in both games. She threw three walks but gave up 18 hits and 16 runs. While hitting, Walker scored one run, made three hits and struck out twice in nine total at-bats. After entering the circle three times through both games, she talked about coming back from her hand injury and credited the outfield for making it easier on her.

“I feel like the defense really cleaned it up towards the end of [the second] game. They helped me out a lot,” Walker said. “My pitching wasn’t really the best the first game. Coming back has been a lot, but I feel like I pushed through.”

Sophomore outfielder Grace Walker scores a run. (Rachel Wagner)

Freshman infielder Raena Del Angel crushed a walk-off three-run homer in the second game to secure her sixth home run of the season. In eight total at-bats, Del Angel collected four hits, two runs and six RBIs. She also walked once and stole one base. Similar to Salgado, she wasn’t expecting to take the ball out of the field.

“I really was in [the batter’s box] thinking ‘base hit,’” Del Angel said. “I was not definitely thinking I’d swing out of my shoes. We were feeding off of each other. If I didn’t score, then the next person [would’ve].”

Sophomore infielder Lindsey Onnezi recorded five hits in eight at-bats through both games. She also scored three runs and stole two bases. She said the team was disheartened after losing game one but winning game two reminded them of what they were celebrating.

“I’m really happy that we picked up the energy,” Onnezi said. “We were super upset that we lost the first game, but I think we did a great job coming back and being excited. Today was super fun. I loved all of the decorations, and the freshmen did a really good job of making [the dugout] festive for us. It was nice to get a W on sophomore day.”

The Chaparrals go back on the road to battle the Bryant & Stratton College Bobcats with the first game starting at 3 p.m. on April 23 in Menominee Falls, Wis.

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