Just two days removed from a 20-run trouncing of Millis on the road, the Holliston High softball team returned home to Damigella Field to lay an 11-0, five-inning rout on visiting Westwood Monday night.
Led by a strong performance in the circle by pitcher Molly Blake, the Panthers improved to 9-2 (9-1 TVL) with its second-straight mercy-rule victory in Tri-Valley League play. Blake allowed only four hits and struck out nine while going 2-for-4 at the plate.
Ashley Higgins went 2-for-3 with a triple and Emma Durkee went 2 for 4 and swiped two of the Panthers' 10 stolen bases on the night. The Panthers bombarded Westwood pitching, racking up 15 hits.
“We really hit up and down the line-up tonight," said Melissa Dlugolecki. "I mean, it was a really solid team effort tonight.”
The last time the two teams played, Holliston managed a 5-3 road victory in a highly-competitive matchup. Monday night was a completely different story however as the Panthers showed strong improvements in several areas, which clearly were reflected in the final score.
“Our goal is to measure our success against ourselves, to compare us to us," said Dlugolecki. "And since the last time we played them, we doubled our hits, tripled our stolen bases, minimized our errors, so we showed a lot of improvement since the last time we faced them.”
Despite the recent string of success, Dlugolecki said that the Panthers are still focused on continued improvement.
“We just look to constantly find a way to improve every game, to improve on our last performance," said Dlugolecki. "Whether that’s each kid having a little better at-bat, or reading the signs better or reading the play better, just finding a way to improve every game. And then, if each kid does that, then our whole team does better.
“It’s a talented group," added Dlugolecki. "They’re hard-working. We have awesome practices, we really do. If anyone watches our practices, I think they would understand why they’re so successful out there because they work very hard. They push each other, their intensity’s up, and they’re a good group of girls.”
Dlugolecki and her team have just a short rest to enjoy before getting back to business with an away game at Hopkinton on Wednesday (4:30 p.m.).