Rally earns Foresters softball split with Grace

The Huntington University softball team topped visiting Grace, 10-7, to forge a split with the Lancers after losing a 12-inning tilt beforehand, 11-8, on Thursday, April 17.

In the nightcap, Grace scored two runs in the first frame and three more in the second to build a 5-0 lead and show Forester pitcher Kaylin Yon the door early. After surrendering five hits and four runs in 1.1 innings, Yon gave way to Lea Buckenmyer, who limited the Lancers to three scores the rest of the contest.

Coach Doug Gower's squad got on the board with a solo tally in the bottom of the second and countered a Grace score in the top of the third with four runs in the home half of the frame to trail only 6-5.

Huntington used a pair of scores in the fourth to sneak in front, 7-6, but Grace knotted things back up with a solo tally in the top of the fifth. Buckenmyer shut the Lancers out after that, though, and the Foresters replied with three runs in the bottom of the fifth to take the lead for good.

Buckenmyer, a freshman, scattered six hits over 5.2 innings to pick up the win, her fifth against only one loss.

Sophomore Emily O'Leary banged out two hits and drove in as many runs for the Foresters, 20-15 overall and 13-9 in the Crossroads League. Senior Lindsay Shellabarger supplied a trio of base pokes and runs, with freshman Stephanie Osborn matching the hit total to help Huntington finish with 17.

Olivia Winget gave up seven hits and six runs, three of which were earned, in the final 3.2 innings to take the loss for the Lancers, who fall to 16-22 overall and 12-10 in conference.

Clarissa Knight paced Grace's offense with two runs batted in.

In the first game, the Lancers led 7-0 going into the bottom of the third inning only to see the Foresters tie things up by the end of regulation. The deadlock persisted until the 12th frame, when Grace plated four runners to go up 11-7 and Huntington mustered only one run in its half of the inning to fall short.

Senior Marcie McDougle went the distance in the circle for the Foresters, getting hung with the loss after allowing 14 hits and 11 runs, six earned, during the 12-inning affair, with 11 strikeouts.

Junior Cristin Carter contributed two base pokes and as many RBI to Huntington's regulation rally. Sophomore Annie Weaver clobbered three of the Foresters' 11 hits and crossed home twice, with DePew matching the latter feat.

Alex Shipley tossed the last seven frames for Grace, scattering five hits and four runs to earn the victory.