Kelly Duffy up to bat during a game in 2019. Duffy recorded a hit in both games of the double header on Sunday. - File Photo / Miguel Martinez

Rowan Softball lost both games against Salisbury University during their trip to Maryland over the past weekend. In the first game of the double header, Rowan lost 12-3 in five innings, with hits from Payton MacNair, Kelly Duffy, Cali Kraemer, Korie Hague and Mackenzie Short.

Junior Alexa Saccomanno was given the loss, pitching three innings and giving up four earned runs. She is now 1-1 on the season. Senior Kelly Duffy also got to see some time in the circle, pitching one inning and giving up eight earned runs. 

After not pitching in a game in quite some time, Duffy reflects on her performance on the mound. 

“That team was probably one of the best hitting teams I’ve seen,” Duffy said. “Just kind of locating the ball more or hitting my spots more and kind of knowing who I’m going against, and not giving them pitches that they’re looking for.” 

In regards to what pitches she felt were working, and which she struggled with, she says that she threw a lot of fastballs and felt as if she could mix up her pitches a little bit more. 

“I didn’t throw that many different pitches, I kind of was using my fastball a lot, and they [Salisbury] were good enough where they could hit my fastball,” Duffy said. “So I think I needed to mix it up a little more, but it also was my first time on the mound in a really long time, so I think that I let my nerves get the best of me.” 

Head Coach Kim Wilson also reflected on Duffy’s pitching performance over the weekend. 

“You’re not always going to have good days, some days youre going to have bad days, and you’re going to have to come back from that,” Wilson said. “That’s why we practice, and we look forward to playing this weekend.” 

In the second game, Rowan lost 5-1 and only had two hits, one by freshman Breanna Bryant and the other by Duffy. Freshman pitcher Cat Thomas pitched for the Profs, and gave up five earned runs. She is now 2-2 on the season. 

Duffy did produce for the Profs at the plate, being the only player to collect a hit in both games. 

“I think that being that I was a senior on the team, and have a little more experience compared to the younger girls, I was able to prepare better,” Duffy said. “I kind of just took whatever scouting report and feedback that our coaches gave us on both of the pitchers and used that to my best ability.” 

She is often the designated player for the Profs, meaning that she hits for one of the nine defensive players starting in the field. 

As a senior, having faced many different pitchers in the New Jersey Athletic Conference (NJAC), she is able to bring her game experience to her teammates and help them during games. 

“Going into the NJAC, I basically faced all the pitchers so far that we’re going to play, and I kind of know how they throw, where they throw and I have a really good understanding,” Duffy said. “So I can pass that information on to my teammates in practice and during the game of what she’s throwing, where to stand in the box, things like that, that do make a difference when you’re out there.” 

Although Rowan is 4-4 on the season, coach Wilson remains positive with their performance over the weekend. 

“Defensively we did a good job, we made some nice plays, we got a lot of people in the game,” Wilson said. “It was a close game in the second game, so I liked our composure coming back off of getting beat in the first game, and having an opportunity to see some different pitchers, they’re a very good team, and I’d love to play them again in the future.” 

Rowan has only played eight games this season, compared to the 14 games that Salisbury has played. They are also 10-4 on the season with strong hitting and dominant pitching. 

Coach Wilson is also happy with the progress that her pitchers and batters have made this season. The team is heavily rostered with underclassmen, and Wilson is happy with the game experience that they are getting. 

“We’ve been getting some good production out of different people in our lineup, so I’m happy with where we’re going, we’re playing a competitive schedule,” she said.

The Profs will return to Glassboro to play a doubleheader against Stockton in a non-conference matchup on Saturday, March 27 at 12 p.m. and 2 p.m.

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