Terrapins softball pitcher Madison Martin waited patiently for her chance to shine.

When she earned the start against Boston on Friday in Florida, she showed coach Julie Wright how dominant she could be.

In her first start since 2014, Martin allowed just four hits and one run in six innings of work. The redshirt junior, who missed last year with a foot injury, also notched six strikeouts in the 3-2 win.

Wright used Martin as a reliever to build up her stamina in the team’s first two tournaments, and the coach felt good enough about the pitcher’s progress to start her against the Terriers.

“She just took off from there,” Wright said.

Pitcher Brenna Nation said a couple of weeks ago that few pitchers in college softball have the ability to overpower offenses because of the skill of modern hitters. Albeit with a limited resume, Martin is making a case that she might be able to.

After her start against Boston, she threw five innings against Columbia, allowing no runs while tallying six more strikeouts.

Martin had similar success in the team’s next three games. In the five games over the weekend, she pitched 23.1 innings, surrendering just three earned runs while recording 23 strikeouts.

“I used a lot of my changeup and my off-speed pitch,” Martin said. “Those, along with my hard pitches, kept hitters off balance.”

On the season, she leads the team with a 1.73 ERA and ranks first in strikeouts with 29.

“It’s good to finally get my feet under me and be able to help out the team as much as I can,” Martin said.

Catcher Kristina Dillard was impressed with Martin’s play and said the team needs to look up to her to see how to handle the adversity of its 5-10 start to the campaign.

“I saw a competitor,” Dillard said. “I saw a player who wants to win, who wants to do well.”

Martin’s emergence in the pitching circle is crucial given the offense’s struggles. The Terps are averaging only 3.9 runs per game and have needed strong pitching performances to stay in games.

But Nation and pitcher Hannah Dewey, who have been leaned on heavily in the pitching circle, have ERAs of 6.13 and 6.78, respectively.

Martin gives Wright someone to turn to when the other pitchers aren’t as effective.

“It’s really nice to know that she can come in and really be a third pitcher for us,” Wright said.