Bronx Science softball coach Thomas Morris was almost apologetic after his team’s victory over neighborhood and divisional-rival Clinton last week.
The vast difference between the Bronx Science program — one which has won the past two Bronx A Division championships — and a young and rebuilding Clinton program — one with seven freshmen and sophomores on its 14-player roster — was clear almost from the game’s first pitch.
And when the last pitch of the top of the first inning was tossed and Clinton had finally managed to record the third out after almost 45 minutes, Science had gone through its batting order almost three full times, put 23 runs on the board, and was well on its way to a lopsided 50-0 victory.
Overall it was Bronx Science’s third straight blowout victory to open the season after the Wolverines dispatched Walton 18-6, and Stevenson 20-0, to open the season. But a victory of this proportion even had the Science players a little uneasy.
“That was crazy,” said Science’s Anna Leidner, who had two homers, scored eight runs and knocked in eight more. “We were wondering how do we act and still be respectful in a situation like that. That was hard.”
It was a case of an established power program going up against a rebuilding one — and make no mistake, Bronx Science is most definitely a Public Schools Athletic League power. With their 3-0 start to this season, the Wolverines are now 41-10 over the past three-plus seasons, with those two division titles in their back pocket.
So what can Science take from a victory like this?
“There were little things that happened in the first two games, like not reading the ball and not running aggressively, that they did a better job on today,” Morris said. “That’s kind of what we’re working on right now. We know for the most part the season is a preparation for the playoffs, so we can’t expect to just show up the way we did to start the first two games and expect to beat teams from outside the Bronx. So we’re working on the mental side of things.”
Science also was dominant on the mound as Ava Cutler struck out nine of the 14 batters she faced in the four-inning shortened game. And with Cutler and Leidner, Morris’ other pitching ace, prospects are bright for another long playoff run for the Wolverines this season.
“The potential is definitely there. We have the two most experienced pitchers in the Bronx in Ava and Anna, and that always helps,” Morris said. “And we also have the defense. But the most impressive thing is we have this junior class, which has the confidence from their experience over the last two years. When they go to work it’s pretty impressive.”
The Wolverines now go on spring break and are off until April 19 when they face American Studies at Harris Field. Morris said he’ll use the break to help refine some things with his team, not that they appeared to need any refining after their first three games.
“We made it to the Final Eight (in the playoffs) the last two years, but a lot of that is the luck of the draw when it comes to the playoffs,’ Morris said. “But we definitely want to get back to that Final Eight and be division champs again. That’s our goal.”
Judging by their early season results, Bronx Science seems well on its way.