Softball Season Recap
- Release Date:
- June 4, 2012
- The Office of Sports Information
- (716) 649-7900 ext. 333
2012 Season Review: Working through a rookie head coach and the addition of several first year players, the 2012 seniors led the Hilbert softball program back to a competitive level of play by the time they graduated in May. The 2012 Hawks improved to 8-19 with a few big Allegheny Mountain Collegiate Conference (AMCC) wins after suffering a 1-26 rainy and shortened 2011 season. The Lisa Baker led-program saw improvements in the Hawks offense and defense with upgraded markers in both categories.
Hilbert opened Baker’s inaugural season with two close losses (Johnson State and Keystone State) on the first day of the Fastpitch Dreams Spring Classic in Myrtle Beach, SC. The Hawks rebounded the next morning giving Baker her first win as a head coach in their 13-1 victory over Johnson State but then suffered two losses in a row to Drew University and Baptist Bible. After a 13-2 victory over Henry Ford Community College, Hilbert dropped their next contest (6-4) to Ursuline; later that day, they captured their second Division III countable-win over The College Of New Rochelle (12-2, 5 innings). The blue and white squared off against another community college (Kellogg) to end their nine-game tourney down south. Hilbert returned to Western New York with a 2-5 overall record against Division III teams and they proved they were ready for whatever mother-nature could throw at them. After what seemed like a rained-out 2011 season, the clouds and rain stayed away and allowed for great games to be played up north.
Hilbert faced Penn State Behrend in their first northern game and captured their first-ever AMCC win over the Lions in the second game of the double header. The Hawks built a 5-2 lead through six innings and held on in the bottom of the seventh (5-4) for their first AMCC win for Baker and their first victory – home or away – over the Lions, who finished the season at 16-2 as the AMCC champions. Two more AMCC opponents grabbed wins from the Hawks (Altoona and Mount Aloysius) before Hilbert won their first double header victory of the season against Cazenovia (15-7, 10-0 in 5 innings).
The Hawks finished the season with six conference double headers and captured three games along the way. After losing the La Roche and Bradford, Hilbert took their second double header double wins against Franciscan University April 14 (19-3 in 5 innings, and 12-7). They followed those wins up with a road victory against cross-town rival Medaille College (4-2), again pulling a first victory from the Mavericks since the 2005 season. The Greensburg and D’Youville games completed the 2012 season positioning the Hawks in ninth place in the AMCC league with a 4-14 record.
Seniors Halsey Baker, Allison Hall, Jill Martucci, and Emili Ripley were one consistent core group of players through the coaching changes and they seemed to thrive their senior year as players and teammates. Baker finished the 2012 season ranked 7th in Division III statistics in doubles per game after she led the team with 14 double-bagers and her career best .356 batting average and team best 32 RBIs. Ripley led the Hawks, and set a new standard for the program, when she whacked 6 home runs and finished ranked 176 in Division III in home runs per game. The third-year athlete graduated with a .314 batting average covering 50 bases. Martucci tied for first place on the team with two triples and finished second with nine doubles scoring a team-best 32 runs. And Allison Hall had a few very timely hits to help elevate the Hawks to eight wins this season.
Freshman first basewoman Rachel Collierled the Hawks going .483 at the plate with nine walks and four strike outs en route to being named to the AMCC Third Team All-Conference squad.
As a team, the Hawks made dramatic improvements statistically across the board. Hilbert finished the season ranked 40th in Division III with .333 batting average. Where a season ago, Martucci’s .361 average led the team, this year’s team had six players hit better than .361. Offensively Hilbert more than doubled their runs scored from a season ago (166 vs. 80) and defensively, the Hawks held their opponents to twenty-four fewer tallies.
Sharing the main duties in the circle were Ripley and junior Devan Jonathan who were supported by Vicki Ernst and Allison Hall. The four combined to improve Hilbert’s pitching in every category shutting down their opponent’s to a .351 average (vs. a .406 in 2011).
With the loss of experienced graduates, coach Baker will rely on thirteen returning veterans and a crop of new rookies to continue to improve the competitiveness of the softball program with the goal of capturing the AMCC championship each season.
Hilbert College, located in suburban Hamburg, N.Y., south of Buffalo, is a private four-year college founded in 1957 in the Catholic Franciscan tradition. With nearly 1,100 students, Hilbert is a dynamic Western New York college that offers career-focused majors, including one of the top criminal justice programs in the region, and more than 50 minors and concentrations. The college’s engaging, student-centered campus community offers numerous leadership, internship and service learning opportunities from which students launch successful careers while making positive changes in their communities. Hilbert has expanded its academic offerings with the college’s first graduate programs, one a master’s in criminal justice administration and the other a master’s in public administration, and new Accelerated Degree Programs geared to adult learners.