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SMC Softball: Belles propel forward with doubleheader victory

Nick Boyle | Friday, April 27, 2012

Saint Mary’s swept their doubleheader Thursday, defeating Manchester by scores of 3-2 and 9-8.

The wins mark a near-record number of wins for the Belles (26-10, 9-6 MIAA).

“I’m very proud of our girls’ accomplishments this season,” Belles coach Erin Sullivan said. “This is the most wins we have had since 2007, second-most in program history.”

The first game proved to be a close contest dominated by pitching.

Saint Mary’s struck first, scoring in the top of the second. Freshman first baseman Michelle Duncan came through with an RBI single for the visiting Belles, putting them up 1-0.

Manchester (18-20, 7-7 Heartland) responded by tallying runs in the second and fourth innings to claim a 2-1 lead.

Down to their last at-bats, Saint Mary’s rallied back to take the lead. Senior centerfielder Lauren Enayati drove in the tying run with an RBI single. Sophomore pitcher Callie Selner followed with a bases-loaded walk to push across the winning run for the Belles.

Selner then closed out the game on the mound, finishing off her complete-game win. She allowed no earned runs, while only giving up five hits.

“Game one was a real pitcher’s duel,” Sullivan said. “Selner threw a great game for us – gave up only 4 singles.”

The second game was much more of an offensive contest, with 17 total runs scored.

Saint Mary’s jumped out to an early lead, and after three innings held a slim 5-4 advantage. The Belles then plated three in the fifth inning, taking a four-run lead.

The Spartans came back to tie the game at 8-8 entering the seventh inning. Selner came up big once again for Saint Mary’s, hitting a two-out double to drive in the winning run in the top of the seventh.

“We showed great mental toughness entering the seventh inning, down a run in the first game and tied 8-8 in seventh inning of the second game,” Sullivan said.

The Belles next take on Alma at home on Saturday. It will be senior day for the Belles, and a win will secure a berth in the MIAA tournament. First pitch against the Scots is scheduled for 2 p.m.

Contact Nick Boyle at nboyle1@nd.edu