Belles split conference doubleheader with Adrian
Dominic Bush | Wednesday, April 1, 2015
Saint Mary’s began MIAA play Tuesday with a trip to Adrian, Michigan, to square off with the host Bulldogs for a weekday doubleheader that saw both games reach extra innings.
The two squads split the games with the Belles (10-6, 1-1 MIAA) claiming the first in eight innings, 5-4, while Adrian (11-5, 1-3) emerged victorious in the second eight-inning game, 9-5.
Junior Sarah Burke took the hill for the Belles in the first game and went five innings, giving up four runs. Freshman Jessica Alberts replaced Burke in the sixth, with the game knotted at four.
The game remained in stalemate until the eighth inning, when Belles freshman Morgan Raymer, who entered the game as a pinch runner, belted a liner to right field and drove in fellow freshman Jamie Young.
Belles head coach Kelli Zache said she was not surprised at all Raymer provided the game-winning hit.
“She is a competitor and a good hitter,” Zache said.
Raymer, along with freshman Cassie Young — who went 2-for-4 with a double and an RBI — provided a much-needed offensive spark in the absence of junior catcher/first baseman Jillian Busfield, who leads the team in home runs and RBIs. Alberts pitched a scoreless eighth to record her second victory, improving her mark to 2-1 on the season.
In game two, Alberts did not enjoy the same success as she did in her previous outing. She was tagged for three homers for a total of four earned runs in the first inning. Raymer, the game one hero, quickly replaced Alberts in the first and settled things down for the Belles.
Despite spotting the Bulldogs an early four runs, the Belles took the lead with a five-run fifth, capped off by a two-run double courtesy of freshman infielder Kayla Raymer. The Bulldogs struck back in the seventh with an RBI single by senior Brooke Stewart, sending the game to extra innings again.
The Bulldogs exploded for another four-run inning in the top of the eighth. With Saint Mary’s unable to get anything going in the bottom of the eighth, Morgan Raymer was credited with the loss, dropping her to 2-3 on the year.
The Belles now turn their attention to Wednesday’s home doubleheader against non-conference opponent Defiance. While the Lady Jackets (4-12, 0-4) are currently last in the Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference, Zache said her team is not taking any foes lightly.
“I don’t like to take anyone lighter because the moment you do, is the moment it can hurt you,” Zache said.
Saint Mary’s and Defiance will play their doubleheader at Saint Mary’s College softball field, with first pitch scheduled for 3:30 p.m.