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Lady Hornets hitting struggles forces split with SBU

Lady Hornets hitting struggles forces split with SBU

Will Austin

Jamie Stevens, catcher and infielder for the Hornets, drives a hit in the first game of a double-header against Southwest Baptist Saturday April 19 at Trusler Sports Complex. The Hornets won the first game 4-1, and lost the second 0-3.

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For a team with a batting average of .310 on the season, one could see why the Emporia State softball team would be a bit dejected after getting only 11 hits in 56 plate appearances in a doubleheader split with Southwest Baptist Bearcats.

“I really didn’t feel like we did a good job hitting the ball, for us the entire day. I felt like they were jamming us up quite a bit and I felt like we weren’t getting hits that we would normally get. I felt like we didn’t attack with the bats in the first game and we didn’t enter game two with an aggressive mentality,” said Julie LeMaire, head coach.

The first game started off promising for the Lady Hornets as Stephanie Goodwin, junior outfielder, singled to left field but was caught trying to steal second to end the inning. In the second inning, the Hornets took a 2-0 lead on three hits and one error.

Katelyn Caston, junior pitcher, had a shutout going through the third inning but was broken up in the fourth. This was the only run scored by the Bearcats.

Things didn’t pick up for ESU until the bottom of the fifth inning, when ESU scored two runs. Madison Rich, junior infielder, hit an RBI single up the middle to score Taylor Zordel, junior infielder. Trisha Vogel, senior infielder, hit a sacrifice fly to score Rich. While Caston had only one strikeout, she was able to force ground balls and pop-ups to get outs for an impressive performance on the bump.

Game two was a pitchers’ duel as both teams were scoreless through extra innings.

Eryn Stockman, freshman pitcher, was on the bump for ESU coming into the game with an 11-3 record on the year. She threw a complete game and then some, going all nine innings of the scheduled seven-inning contest. She threw 124 pitches, struck out five, gave up three and hit one. The Hornets recorded 15 fly outs and 5 ground outs in game two, holding the Bearcats scoreless through eight. In the ninth they gave up three runs and couldn’t respond in the bottom half leading to a stunning loss.

“We can handle our D well, but then towards the last inning we just kept the ball up and couldn’t place it right and couldn’t get our bats going,” said Jacie Stephens, freshman recreations major and catcher.

In game two, the Hornets saw 31 at-bats and only had three hits, making it a miserable evening at the plate, batting less than .100. Only Stockman, Vogel and Gragg saw hits. Everyone else never got on base.

“I don’t think we came to play today. I mean, we scored what, four runs? I mean we just didn’t play like the team we can be. I think it’s just a mindset and it just wasn’t us today,” said Taylor Zordel, junior shortstop and health promotions major.

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Lady Hornets hitting struggles forces split with SBU