Belles fall to Wheaton in doubleheader
Observer Sports Staff | Friday, March 27, 2015
After returning home from its spring break, Saint Mary’s was ready to start its regular season off with a home game last Sunday. The Belles’ doubleheader against Dominican was postponed, however, and the team had to wait until Thursday to play at Wheaton.
The Belles finished their spring break trip with an 8-2 record. However, Wheaton halted the early-season momentum Thursday, handing Saint Mary’s two losses yesterday in Wheaton, Illinois.
The first game ended via mercy rule after five innings and saw the Belles take a 9-1 loss. In the second inning, the Thunder put up six runs on junior pitcher Sarah Burke. Although Burke managed to strike out three in 1.2 innings, she also walked four batters and allowed four hits. Her trouble started at the beginning of the second when she walked the leadoff batter. She then loaded the bases multiple times before a double by opposing junior pitcher Katie Thornton broke the game open. The Thunder added one more run on Burke to make the game 6-0 before Saint Mary’s head coach Kelli Zache called on freshman right-hander Jessica Alberts to finish the inning. Wheaton tacked on another run in the third and two more in the fifth to claim the mercy-rule victory.
Thornton allowed two hits and one run, unearned, to collect the win.
The second game of the day was closer, but the Belles were still saddled with a 4-3 loss. The Belles loaded the bases with nobody out in the first inning, yet could not manage to put a run across on Thornton, throwing her second game of the day.
In the second inning, both teams scored three runs, and the Belles managed to knock Thornton out of the game early. The scoring started for Saint Mary’s when freshman outfielder Makenzie Duncan doubled to center field to knock in freshman pitcher Morgan Raymer. Soon after that, junior outfielder Sarah Callis singled in junior second baseman Angela Dainelli.
The Belles stranded five runners over the rest of the game and failed to score again.
In the fourth inning, Raymer ran into trouble and gave up an unearned run when a Wheaton runner tried to steal second. The runner swiped the bag and advanced to third on a fielding error by freshman shortstop Jamie Young. Despite allowing four runs, Raymer struck out seven batters and issued zero walks but still took the loss.
The Belles will next take the field for their doubleheader at North Central on Saturday at 2 p.m. Saint Mary’s then opens MIAA play against conference foe Adrian on Tuesday.