Team Opera Semi-Final Rundown

Last night was our softball league’s semi-final game. It was do or die. Unfortunately, we didn’t do. It makes such a huge difference in our game when we’re missing the key players we depend on for big hits. And really, that’s all we were missing last night. Defensively, we played a solid, solid game.

At the end of the 1st inning, the game was tied at 3 a piece. For 4 innings we held them off, leaving their runners stranded and gaining 2 runs ourselves on a few brilliant plays. We were so close to that big “W” but didn’t let our guard down, not for one second. But alas, at the bottom of the 6th, they managed to load up the bases and send their runners home, scoring 7 runs (which is a mercy in our league). We had no play available to get that one final out to end the inning.

Heading into the 7th inning, we had one final chance at bat to regain the lead. Our first batter got a solid hit well into center field, but it hung up there too long and was caught. Up next was Veronica (dun dun duuuun), who hadn’t hit worth a damn all night long. She did what she thought was best to get on base; a full, unpowered swing to allow the ball to dribble and roll between their catcher and our pitcher. It worked! Veronica got safely onto first base, and with only one out, a comeback was possible. The fates had other plans for Team Opera, however and the next batter also popped out, leaving us one out away from the end of the game.

Of course, it was Ashley’s at bat. Emotions ran high and nerves started to rise. Placing too much pressure on herself to hit well, she swung at the first pitch and sent a poor pathetic pop to their all star short stop, which was easily and painfully caught. We lose. At the end of it all, the entire team second guessed their decisions on every play of the game, but what’s done is done and there is always next year.

In the post game interview with Ashley, she kept saying that she shouldn’t have swung at THAT pitch, but at the time, how was she to know? She was reminded all night that it was not her fault, we all played exceptionally well with the pared down team we had.

Our team has come a long way and getting to this point and not making it to the final once in the last 3 years has been hard on us. Even though this is a beer league and it’s really for fun, we enjoy winning. We enjoy being champions and have now been denied that honour 3 years running. But next year, next year will be our year. Hopefully with an extended season (which we’ve been discussing), we will be able to gain our momentum well before the playoffs. It was rather sad last night when we realized that it was our very last game together for 2010, as we all enjoy the Wednesday night gathering and the easy camaraderie. Of course, we still have our year end party (stay tuned for a post on that once dates are confirmed) but for post game drinks, its game over.

See you on the diamond in 2011.