Softball Defeats Westminster, Falls to Nebraska Wesleyan in 11 Innings
BOX 1 | BOX 2
Grinnell, Iowa, April 6, 2012 – The Washington University in St. Louis softball team split a pair of games on Friday in the opening day of the Grinnell College Tournament in Grinnell, Iowa.
The Bears scored two runs in the sixth and three in the seventh in a 5-2 win over Westminster College in the opener, and then dropped a hard-fought 7-5 defeat in 11 innings to Nebraska Wesleyan University in game two.
Sophomore Maggie Mullen went 5-for-8 (.625 batting average) with three runs scored, a double, a home run and two RBIs in the two games on Friday. Mullen upped her batting average to .395, and moved into a tie for fifth place in school history with her 15th home run of her career in game two against Nebraska Wesleyan.
Washington U. 5, Westminster 2
Westminster (8-11) scored an unearned run in its first at-bat in the top of the first inning, and then pushed the lead to 2-0 with an RBI bloop double to left by Megan Kaysinger. The Bears left seven runners on base in the opening five innings and could not push a run across the plate until the sixth.
Mullen doubled to lead off the sixth for the Bears, and then senior Rebecca Salisbury walked after a 10-pitch at-bat. After back-to-back strikeouts by Westminster starting pitcher Brittany Lee, senior Olivia Cook singled through the left side to make it 2-1. Junior Ashley Janssen walked to load the bases, and then Salisbury scored on a wild pitch to tie the game.
Washington U. got the leadoff runner on in the top of the seventh following a double to deep center by senior Corissa Santos. The double for Santos was the 41st of her career, tied for third most in school history. Junior Sondra Polonsky walked, and then Mullen single to load the bases.
With the bases loaded an no one out, Salisbury sent a fly ball to right that was dropped by Molly Mendenhall allowing Santos to score the eventual game-winning run. Freshman Sydney Caldwell provided two insurance runs for Washington U. as her single to left field scored two more runs to make it 5-2.
Cook (8-5) picked up the win on the mound allowing three hits and one earned run, while striking out a career-best 10 batters. She also went 2-for-3 with an RBI at the plate. Washington U. had nine hits in the win and left 10 runners on base. The Bears got the leadoff runner on base six of seven innings, but only took advantage in the final two frames. Mullen was 3-for-4 with two runs scored in the win. Lee (5-4) struck out 11 and allowed four earned runs for Westminster.
Nebraska Wesleyan 7, Washington U. 5 (11 innings)
The Prairie Wolves (7-11) scored a run in the top of the first on an RBI triple by Becky Bomberger, but Washington U. answered back with three runs in the bottom of the second inning to grab the lead back at 3-1.
Polonsky reached on an error to leadoff the inning, and then Mullen hit her team-leading sixth homerun of the year over the 210-foot fence to give the Bears a 2-1 lead. Sophomore Kelsey Neal singled and then was pinch ran by freshman Paige Biles, who stole second and scored on a double by Caldwell.
An unearned run by Nebraska Wesleyan in the top of the third trimmed the lead to 3-2, and a sacrifice fly by Bomberger with two outs in the seventh tied the game. Neal made the start for Washington U. allowing four hits and one earned run in four innings pitched. She gave way to Cook, who pitched the final seven innings.
After a scoreless eighth inning, each team pushed a run across the plate in the ninth and 10th inning. Senior Alyssa Abramoski had an RBI groundout in the ninth and Polonsky added a sacrifice fly in the 10th. Nebraska Wesleyan scored two unearned runs in the 11th inning, taking advantage of two errors by Washington U.
Cook (8-6) suffered the loss pitching seven innings in relief, allowing five hits and five runs (one earned). She tossed 14 innings on Friday allowing just two earned runs and dropped her earned run average to 2.23. Neal (3-for-3) and Mullen (2-for-4, two RBIs) led the offensive attack for Washington U., who had eight hits in the loss.
Washington University (16-10) concludes play in the Grinnell College Tournament with a pair of games on Saturday, April 7. The Bears take on host Grinnell at Noon, and then will play in either the consolation or championship game at 2 or 4 p.m. Washington U. sports information Director Chris Mitchell will be broadcasting both games live at: www.pennatlantic.com, while live stats will be available at: http://bearsports-livestats.wustl.edu/Softball/xlive.htm.
Bear Notebook: Santos started the 154th and 155th consecutive game of her career on Friday … Cook recorded 13 strikeouts on Friday in the two games, pushing her career total to 200.