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MHS Softball Finding its Way

Coming into the 2014 season off back-to-back state championships, expectations were high for the Milford High School softball team. But this is a younger, less experienced Scarlet Hawks squad, and the early season has produced a few bumps in the road on the way to a 1-4 start. "I think we are doing a nice job, the effort is there," said head coach Steve DiVitto. "What we lack is experience, but it's something we are trying to work through."
Milford's first win of the season came in a 3-0 shutout of Canton behind a four-hit effort from freshman pitcher Ali Atherton. MHS lost a hard-fought game against Mansfield, 4-2, and let a late lead slip away in a 5-4 loss to Hopedale.
"It's building, and that's the biggest thing," said DiVitto. "It's a long season and the second you start worrying about what you did in game three or four and not looking ahead, you're in trouble. The girls are doing a good job coming to practice and working hard every day and I think in the coming days and weeks, we are going to see a difference in this team."
Defense and hitting have been particular areas where the Scarlet Hawks have struggled. Milford committed two errors late in the loss to Hopedale and had eight miscues in a 14-2 loss to Coyle-Cassidy. As a team, MHS is hitting just .208 on the season.
"One of the pleasant surprises has been our young stable of pitchers," said DiVitto. "Two freshmen and two sophomores and they are doing a nice job keeping us in the game, but one of our biggest struggles has been hitting the ball."
Junior Allie Piergustavo has not been a part of the offensive woes. The first baseman and outfielder is hitting a sizzling .462 on the young season with three doubles, a home run, and three runs batted in. Sophomore outfielder Sydney Pounds has also stood out, with a .333 average and two runs scored through her first five games.
On the mound, Atherton has shown the way with a 1-1 record to go with a 3.06 ERA and a 1.25 WHIP. She earned a win against Canton and took a tough-luck loss against Hopedale. DiVitto has been able to work all four of his young pitchers into game action this season, with Jenny Levine, Maggie Farrell, and Lindsay Baron all making at least one appearance. It's a sharp contrast to the last few seasons for Milford, and DiVitto says the wins will not come quite as easily this season.
"We are going to have to scrap and claw a little bit," he said. "Honestly, it's a fun way to play, but it's also more of a battle and will continue to be. We are going to have to make plays. I've been preaching to our pitchers to keep throwing strikes and give them the chance to make plays. We need to keep working hard, don't get discouraged, and work to get better every day."




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