CHICAGO HEIGHTS | After Tuesday's loss to Andrew, Marian Catholic coach Kerri Evans reminded her team that the 2012 softball season got off to a shaky start before the Spartans settled in and learned from their early season struggles.
Evans and the 2013 Spartans hope to do that once again.
The Spartans fell to Andrew 6-1 on Tuesday in their first home game of the season. Meghan Henson went 1-for-2 with a single and scored the lone Marian Catholic run. Andrew jumped to a 4-0 lead, and the Spartans struggled to find base runners and were forced to play catch up the entire game.
"We told them, we didn't play good early in the year last year and we learned from it," Evans said. "It will come. Andrew played a great game. They attacked the ball, and they're a better team than us. Our goal is to be better tomorrow than we were today."
Marian Catholic (3-2) managed just five hits in the game and had only eight base runners reach base. Andrew scored two runs in the first and two more in the second before the Spartans scored their lone run in the bottom of the second to make it 4-1.
After a walk to start the inning, Henson came home on a fly out by Haley Earl.
"When they came out hitting really well, I think we all got shaken up," Henson said. "They played well. We have things to work on, but I definitely think we have the potential to be great."
Andrew's Bobbi Gottshammer pitched seven strong innings, striking out six while allowing only five hits. Gottshammer kept the Spartans on their heels in the batter's box.
"She was pretty good," Henson said of Gottshammer. "She had decent speed. We didn't come out hitting our strongest today."
With Marian Catholic starting five freshmen and sophomores, Evans knows the Spartans are a young team and will continue to improve.
"We're a young team and our pitching obviously wasn't where it needed to be today," Evans said. "I'm confident that we have the talent that by the end of the year, we're going to get where we need to be."