Softball Team Bashes and Bumbles into Conference Play

BY JACOB FORCE // MARCH 27, 2019 //

After returning from a weeklong tournament in Fort Myers, Fla., where they went 5-5, the Curry softball team has won three out of four games in preparation for the start of conference action.

But before the Colonels can begin Commonwealth Coast Conference play this Saturday, March 30, with a double-header at the University of New England, one more non-conference double-header looms. The Colonels will host the Suffolk University Rams this Thursday (March 28) starting at 3 p.m. Suffolk is 6-8 on the season, following two lopsided losses to Brandeis University this past Tuesday.

Freshman outfielder Liana Duarte is among several Colonels crushing the ball at the plate thus far this season. The team has an astounding batting average of .320, led by sophomore second baseman Taylor Newcomb (.409 and 13 RBI), junior catcher Michaela Colleran (.396 and 15 RBI), sophomore catcher Jordan Perzan (.354 and 17 RBI), sophomore infielders Kiana Lloyd and Jocelyn Diamond (.359 & .313, respectively), and junior infielder Caroline Johnson (.308). Duarte’s college career is only 13 games old, yet she’s raking at a .375 clip and has gotten on base in half of her plate appearances.

It’s also worth noting that those are just the players who have 20 or more at-bats this season. Junior third baseman Molly Horn is hitting .421 on 19 at-bats.

While offense has been a relative breeze thus far, the story has been much different in the field. Curry leads the Commonwealth Coast Conference in errors with a whopping 51 in 14 games. In contrast, conference rival Gordon College (also 8-6 overall) has only 19 errors.

“Our outfield, on a scale of 1-10, has played at about a six,” said coach Bruce Weckworth. “I think we can do better.”

Lloyd and Newcomb currently lead the conference in errors with 12 and 10, respectively. When asked about the two, Weckworth noted, “How do you keep them off the field? But how do you keep them on the field,” given their hitting abilities?

Pitching is another area of challenge for this year’s Colonels squad. Curry’s pitchers have a conference-low average of only 3.38 strikeouts per seven innings, but Weckworth said he remains confident in his staff, especially Mount Ida transfer Carrigan Costello, a sophomore, who has thrown a team-leading 42.2 innings thus far for a 3-3 record.

“We don’t have a pure strikeout pitcher,” said Weckworth. “What this does is it puts more pressure on the field.”

Ultimately, though, Weckworth believes his squad can turn things around. “I like our chances!” he said.

The Colonels will be a bit short-handed facing off against Suffolk this Thursday, as four sophomores are scheduled to miss the double-header. All four are Nursing majors who have academic commitments that will keep them from the field. Weckworth said that’s always a challenge for Curry women’s sports teams, as Nursing is the largest major at Curry, by enrollment, and it’s also typically the most time-intensive.

With an already young team—Curry features just three juniors and one senior—that just means more of the freshmen will get the chance to step up.

 

 

 

Football Team is Confident Entering First CCC Matchup

BY KELLY LEWICKI // OCT. 13, 2017 //

Saturday marks the start of Commonwealth Coast Conference play for the Curry football team (4-1) as its takes on conference newcomer Becker College (0-5) in Worcester, Mass.

The stats look good for the Colonels. So far this season, they’ve outscored the Hawks by a whopping 112 points. In addition, Curry’s average yards per game on offense far exceed Becker’s. But none of that matters to head coach Skip Bandini.

“We don’t really look at stats because one team could have played four great teams and their stats could look awful, and then they go play an average team and they could be a great team,” said Bandini in a press conference Thursday.

Much of the Colonels’ success has been attributed to senior quarterback Alex Corvese, and notice has been taken of the team’s impressive start to the season. But being featured in a recent Boston Herald article, Corvese claimed, is not making the team feel any added pressure.

“I wouldn’t say pressure at all,” said Corverse, who passed for 377 yards with four total touchdowns last week in a 30-27 win over UMass-Dartmouth. “The recognition is cool, but it doesn’t add any pressure in my eyes. We’re still college kids who just want to win everyday down there.”

It is unsure how the Colonels starting lineup will be affected in Saturday’s game, as Bandini revealed there are multiple players who are injured and will not be playing. He declined to make any further comment on who. When asked why not, he simply responded with, “Because I don’t want to say. You’ll find out on game day.”

Becker is averaging just 5.4 points a game this season, so look for Curry’s defense to be aggressive.

The Colonels’ offense has been averaging approximately 400 yards per game, almost evenly split between rushing and passing (189.6 rushing and 207.8 passing). Expect another heavy mix of both in this game, especially against an opposing offense that can’t stay on the field.

Despite all of the odds seeming to be in favor of the Colonels, Bandini remained consistent that he was “nervous as hell” and “not comfortable in this game at all.”

However, the coach attempted to keep things in perspective.

“It’s just another football game,” said Bandini. “We’ve been focused and are going to stay focused. We never play down to an opponent; if we play to the best of our abilities, we will win.”

The teams face off at 2 p.m. on Saturday at Becker.

 

Additional reporting by Zachary Muller

Bouncing Back

BY SEBASTIAN HUMBERT // APRIL 3, 2012 // 

It happened in the 2011 season opener, played in warm Florida weather. Running in from left field to make a play, Caitlin Luquet’s ankle gave in and her knee popped out.

Curry went on to lose that game 9-1. But no one knows what might have been in that contest, or every game thereafter, had Luquet not torn her ACL.

Luquet, from Walnut Creek, Calif., a suburb of San Francisco, comes from a family of athletes for whom sports is life. It wasn’t just her knee and ankle that hurt in having to sit out all of last season.

“It was frustrating for all of us,” says Curry softball coach Bruce Weckworth. “I’d look over and see one of my best players sitting on a bucket, not in the game.”

Although she’s a senior, this is Luquet’s first real season at Curry. She transferred from Regis College, where she helped the women’s basketball team capture its conference championship in 2010 and also starred for the Saints softball team (she was named The Commonwealth Coast Conference rookie of the year in 2009, having hit .406 with four home runs and 21 RBI). After two years and three ankle surgeries at Regis, Luquet opted to transfer to Curry, where the “beautiful campus” and the college’s art major caught her eye.

She also decided to focus solely on softball.

Luquet says the game has been part of her life for as long as she can remember. Her father, Dennis, is a high school baseball coach back in California, and a “really successful” one at that, says Weckworth. In addition, one of Dennis’s good friends growing up was Kiko Garcia, who now coaches a high school softball team in their town, but in his heyday played in the major leagues for 10 years. Garcia last played in 1985 and was a member of the Baltimore Orioles (the team’s starting shortstop when it won the pennant in 1979), Houston Astros and Philadelphia Phillies.

Plagued by injuries for three years, and at two different colleges, Caitlin Luquet hopes to finally live up to her full athletic potential in this, her senior season

Those two men made a significant impact on Luquet’s life, she says, and cultivated an ambition that is at least nine years running. “It started in seventh grade. My whole life I had been around my dad. He was always talking about baseball and hitting…and I wanted to play. I told myself, ‘I’m going to make Kiko’s varsity softball team. Finally, my mom said I could play.”

Baseball has long been her father’s greatest passion, “so anything we could do together was great,” says Luquet, who plays left field for Curry. “We just kept hanging out every day, working on my swing, comparing me to MLB players.”

She says she didn’t realize how difficult it would be living and attending college on the East Coast with her family so far away. But Luquet still has her father with her, in that she has adopted his traits as a mentor and second coach to her Curry teammates.

Ultimately, her goal is to “have Bruce’s job,” she jokes. But Luquet says she truly does want to coach softball. And Weckworth thinks she can do it.

“She’s a leader on the team,” he says. “She has the credibility.”

Through the Colonels’ first 14 games this season (10-6 overall), Luquet was batting a team-best .400 with eight RBI and one home run. She also has held up physically, having started in each game, including another season-opener. This time, Luquet went 2-for-4 in a 6-4 defeat to Saint Lawrence University.

“It was an amazing first game,” she says. “Even though we didn’t win, I realized that we have a really good team….It’s really something special.”