Softball headed to playoffs with eight seed
Bakersfield College’s softball team was able to clinch a playoff berth thanks in part to its tough non-conference schedule.
“It’s a huge accomplishment to make the postseason, and we’re very thankful to be in this situation,” said BC coach Sandi Taylor. “I think the team feels a sense of accomplishment and pride that they were able accomplish something that they knew they could do.
“What helped us the most to make the playoffs was the fact that our non-conference schedule was so tough. I think we did a great job rising to the challenge of a tough schedule and it helped us ensure the playoff spot.”
BC went 9-11 against number one and two ranked teams, and that record helped their cause even more against a tough schedule. BC will play College of the Desert, who finished the season with a record of 32-4, and ended up being the Foothill Conference champions.
“I feel that we matchup against [College of the Desert] really well and we probably have more depth than them, but I feel we matchup well against everyone in the playoffs,” she said. “Hopefully, we can get a run going to have a chance to come back and play at home, and have a shot at the state championship.”
She added that she feels that the break in-between games will give the team a chance to get healthier and create a little momentum for themselves.
BC starting pitcher Julie Estep commented on what it means for the team to make the playoffs.
“It means a lot that we made it because it has been our goal to make the playoffs, and now we have a chance to make a run at the state championship,” she said. “This really shows how good we are. The talent we have and how hard we’ve worked.
“This has been a good year so far. We started off a little rocky, but we were able to peak at the right time, and we worked hard and it showed.”
BC finished off its regular season schedule with a doubleheader against L.A. Valley and both games came down to the wire.
BC lost the first game 5-4, but it took until the ninth inning to decide a winner. Estep pitched six innings, only gave up three runs, six hits and struck out three batters. Outfielder Brittany Messer led the team in hits with three.
In the second game, BC responded with an 8-5 win thanks to four runs in the seventh inning. Three of the four runs came off the bat of Estep.
Starting pitcher Kaila Williams pitched all seven innings and struck out nine batters. Estep had two hits, including a home run, and three RBIs.
“It was hard to play at L.A. Valley, but we were able to persevere and that’s a big deal because they’re a tough team,” said Estep. “We need to keep doing what we’re doing and keep playing consistently good.”
BC is scheduled to play its first playoff game against College of the Desert on May 5.