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SMC Softball: Pitching leads to Belles sweep of Yellow Jackets

Matt Unger | Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Back-to-back complete games by sophomore Callie Selner and senior Monica Palicki led Saint Mary’s to a doubleheader sweep over Defiance on Monday.

The Belles (13-5) took advantage of a struggling Yellow Jackets squad (4-13), winning both road games by scores of 4-0 and 6-2, respectively.

With Selner on the mound in the first game, the Belles capitalized on an error-ridden second inning by the Yellow Jackets to grab a 2-0 lead.

Senior Kristen Nelson’s RBI single with two outs plated the first run of the game and the second scored on Defiance’s third error of the inning.

In the sixth inning, the Belles blew the game open with a two-run home run by freshman Jordie Wasserman.

“Our bats fell asleep Saturday and Sunday, but today we were much more relaxed and weren’t pressing at the plate,” Belles coach Erin Sullivan said.

Meanwhile, Selner (6-3) went the distance in pitching seven shutout innings as she yielded only five hits, walked two and struck out four.

“[Selner] threw really well today and pitched ahead in the count on hitters,” Sullivan said. “She had a great outing and continued what she’s been doing all year.”

This marked the second-consecutive shutout for the Belles after defeating North Park 4-0 on Sunday.

In the second game, the Belles again seized an early lead, scoring on an RBI single by junior Morgan Bedan in the first inning. After the Yellow Jackets briefly took a 2-1 lead in the bottom of the second, the Belles quickly responded with two runs in the third.

After freshman Victoria Connelly stole second base, Nelson singled her home to tie the game and then scored on senior Kate Mitchell’s sacrifice fly to take give the Belles the lead for good.

Senior Lauren Enayati, who batted 3-for-4 in the second game, added an RBI single in the fifth, as Saint Mary’s padded its lead with three more runs.

Meanwhile, Palicki (6-0) struck out three during her complete game performance, while allowing just one earned run, along with three hits.

“Monica threw awesome Sunday and carried that into today,” Sullivan said. “The early run support helped both our pitchers and gave them a nice cushion.”

The Belles return home to host Carthage in a doubleheader Thursday beginning at 3:30 p.m.

Contact Matt Unger at munger3@nd.edu