Barrington's softball team made St. Charles its home away from home Saturday morning.
Due to unplayable field conditions in Barrington, the No. 5 Fillies (1-0) traveled to St. Charles for their season opener against the No. 4 Saints (0-1) and returned home in a positive frame of mind following their 7-1 nonconference victory.
"Excited to start the season and just play a game," said longtime Barrington coach Perry Peterson. "It was a great day to play softball. You had two teams who played in the sectional championship last year -- obviously not against each other but in different sectionals. These two teams were very successful and won 60 games between them last year."
Sophomore designated hitter Leyden Atlas enjoyed a 3-for-3 day at the plate with a pair of RBI in her varsity debut for the Fillies.
"Here's a kid who has never played a varsity game who already has a Division I scholarship to Rutgers," said Peterson. "That kid can play. She's impressive."
Atlas began the Fillies' 6-run second with a hard-hit single, came across on Julia Kozar's game-tying RBI single, and capped the frame with a 2-run single during her second at-bat of the inning.
"I just stayed calm," said Atlas. "I knew that my team was backing me up the whole time. With two outs, you can't crack under pressure. You've got to clear your mind when you get up there."
Barrington's big inning featured a few hard-hit balls, a bases-loaded walk and 3 infield singles, including Carly Kordich's bases-loaded RBI hit deep in the hole at short that snapped a 1-1 deadlock.
Loyola-bound Abbey Jacobsen added an RBI infield single on a slow roller to the third-base side against Saints senior pitcher Delaney Devor.
"They had the one big inning," said Saints coach Jarod Gutesha. "In that 6-run inning, there were some things -- only a couple balls hit out of the infield really. You hate to say 'should've, could've outs' because that's the way the game goes but it was a big inning that was the difference in the game."
Junior winning pitcher Catherine McMahon allowed a run on 4 hits with 6 strikeouts while sophomore Tori Meyer tossed 3 scoreless innings of relief for the Fillies.
"We have three pitchers and we have confidence in all three of them," said Peterson. "We may pitch a little bit more by committee than we have in the past and that's fine with us."
St. Charles East grabbed a 1-0 lead in the top of the second on a 2-out RBI single by junior Maddie Candre, who collected 2 of the Saints' 6 base hits. The inning included Megan Daly's walk and Sara Campagna's double.
"There were a lot of good at-bats," said Gutesha, whose team finished 32-5 last season. "We've seen some live pitching but it has pretty much been indoors. You can't simulate the game excitement until you get in a game.
"Barrington is a good team. That's why we schedule games like these because you want to play the best."