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SMC Softball: Belles gear up for tourney after sweep

Rebecca Slinger | Tuesday, May 1, 2007

Saint Mary’s (25-7, 10-6 MIAA) proved it belongs in the league tournament by sweeping Adrian 5-3 and 10-3 Monday in Adrian, Mich.

The fourth-seeded Belles will face top-seeded Alma College (27-9, 14-2 MIAA) in their first matchup of the MIAA league tournament this weekend. The Belles lost to Alma 9-1 in their first conference game of the season, and then lost 4-0 on March 31.

Belles sophomore first baseman Katie Rashid says the team’s strong finish boosts its confidence.

“We had momentum and I think we’ll carry it to Alma and the tournament,” she said.

The first game went scoreless until the third inning when Belles senior shortstop Sarah Miesle doubled to right center, driving sophomore pitcher Calli Davison home.

Adrian responded with a homer from sophomore Carmen Batway, pulling the Bulldogs into the lead at 2-1. The Bulldogs scored again in the fifth on a sacrifice fly.

In the sixth inning – the Belles’ most successful this season – senior designated player Laura Heline, Rashid, sophomore Cathy Kurczak and freshman Maureen Healy all scored unearned runs to vault Saint Mary’s to a 5-3 win.

Belles sophomore pitcher Kristin Amram was dominant in the second game, fanning 10 batters while giving up seven hits in a 10-3 thrashing of the Bulldogs.

Riding the momentum from game one, the Belles came out swinging. Rashid knocked a two-run shot to left – her fifth homer of the season. Healy scored on a wild pitch, and Davison scored an unearned run.

The Belles continued their spectacular play as Miesle drilled a grand slam in the second; freshman outfielder Ashley Peterson, Davison and Healy scored on the play. Miesle and Peterson scored the final two runs in the game during the fourth inning on Heline’s double.

In 2006, the Belles were 11-5 in MIAA – a win better than this season – but they are still content with their regular-season performance,

“We’re happy with how we’re finishing the season and heading into conference play,” Rashid said.