Good things come to those who wait?
Don’t tell the Manhattan softball team that cliché saying. They’ve waited long enough.
The first nine games of the season were cancelled due to weather-related issues, and then the next two games were postponed. The Lady Jaspers then went on to lose 13 of its first 16 games when it could finally play. Eighteen games later, the Lady Jaspers – who couldn’t play their first 11 games because of the cold conditions – are now the hottest team in the MAAC.
Manhattan (5-3 MAAC, 15-19) is winners of six straight, including 10 of its last 12 at Gaelic Park. The Lady Jaspers boast the best home record in the MAAC at 14-4.
Senior Kate Bowen has been a big reason for the team’s success. In nearly 84 innings pitched, Bowen has an ERA of just 2.93. But she doesn’t just help the team out with her arm, but with her bat as well. Bowen leads the team in batting average with .331 and runs scored with 27.
Although Manhattan hasn’t played against the MAAC’s best just yet, its pitching has been stellar. In the eight combined games against Quinnipiac, Canisius and Niagara, Bowen has a MAAC ERA of just 1.01 while Amy Bright’s ERA is just 2.21.
With the tournament field extended to six teams opposed to four teams in previous years, there’s a good chance the Lady Jaspers can return to the postseason for the first time since 2011.
There are still 16 games left to play, and although Manhattan has played great at home, they won’t be comforted by the rumbling of the one train come tournament time. The Lady Jaspers are just 1-9 on the road, but six of those losses were by one run.
With the pitching of Bowen and Bright, and the bats of Elena Bowman (eight homeruns) and Jenn Vasquez (26 RBI’s), this is the year for the Lady Jaspers to make a run for its second MAAC championship in team history.
They’ve only been waiting since 1999.