Belles take two from Kalamazoo
Observer Sports Staff | Wednesday, April 22, 2015
After being swept by Hope on Senior Day, Saint Mary’s rebounded against Kalamazoo with two wins of their own during Tuesday’s doubleheader.
Freshman outfielder Cassie Young hit a walk-off grand slam to give the Belles (22-10, 9-5 MIAA) a 9-6 win in the first game, and freshman pitcher Morgan Raymer held the Hornets (8-20, 5-11) in check as Saint Mary’s took game two, 8-3.
The Belles are currently battling for the fourth and final spot in the MIAA tournament and needed a successful outing to keep pace over surging Adrian.
Junior Sarah Burke took the hill against the Hornets in game one. Burke was in a groove early, not allowing a hit in the first two innings.
However, the Hornets finally broke through in the third inning. The offensive outburst put Kalamazoo up 4-1.
The score remained unchanged until the bottom of the fifth, when Saint Mary’s freshman second baseman Kelsey Richards tripled off Hornets starter Erin DuRoss, scoring junior third baseman Kayla Chapman.
Kalamazoo tacked on another run in the top of the seventh and put the pressure on the Belles’ bats to respond.
Leadoff hitter and shortstop Jamie Young started the rally with an RBI double — one of two hits for the freshman.
Young scored shortly after on a one-out single from junior left fielder Sarah Callis.
The Belles were down to their last out when freshman right fielder Makenzie Duncan delivered at the plate. Her single to center drove in Callis and knotted things at five apiece.
An RBI groundout in the top half of the extra frame put the Hornets up by one going into the home half of the inning.
DuRoss — who pitched the entire game for Kalamazoo — loaded the bases with a two-out walk to Callis. Once again down to their final out, the Belles turned to a freshman for the big moment, and Young responded, blasting a DuRoss offering deep over the center field fence for a walk-off grand slam.
Raymer pitched a five-hit complete game for the Belles in the day’s second game. She surrendered three runs, only one earned, while striking out seven and not walking a batter.
The Belles offense provided more than enough support for Raymer.
The Young sisters combined to go 5-for-8, drive in three RBIs and score four runs. Duncan also took Hornets junior pitcher Victoria Najact deep for her fifth long ball of the year.
The sweep keeps the Belles 1.5 games up on Adrian (21-13, 7-7) in the MIAA standings.
The Belles will look to keep things rolling as they play host tomorrow to nonconference foe Aurora. The game is scheduled for 3 p.m. at Saint Mary’s Softball Field.