Foresters show grit, but Olivet Nazarene gets last rallies in NAIA tourney

The Huntington University softball team showed its grit with two big rallies, but fourth-ranked Olivet Nazarene University didn't quit either and wound up a 15-10 winner over the Foresters on Monday, May 12, in the NAIA National Championship opening round at Davenport University.

The Foresters, 31-22, had a six-run rally in the third inning to turn a 2-1 disadvantage into a 7-2 advantage, then they came up with a three-spot in the fifth to take a 10-9 lead after Olivet scored seven runs in the top part of the frame for a 9-7 lead.

The Tigers, 47-3-1, had two more rallies up their sleeves, however, and got four runs in the sixth and two more in the seventh to get the win and push HU into the consolation bracket.

Katie DePew had three hits and two runs batted in and Bess Fiechter also had two RBI to lead the gritty Forester offense, which produced 11 hits on the day. Annie Weaver, Cristin Carter and Kaitlyn Troyer each had two hits in the contest, with both of Troyer's being doubles.

Both teams scored solo tallies in the first inning, and Olivet added a second run in its half of the third before HU sent 11 batters to the plate and got five hits on the way to six runs in its half of the frame.

The lead held up until the wheels seem to come off for HU in the top of the fifth. Olivet smacked out five hits and used two HU errors to push across seven runs and take a 9-7 lead, but Coach Doug Gower's team came right back for three runs in its half of the frame for a 10-9 advantage.

Marcie McDougle, the second of four HU hurlers, was tagged for the loss, yielding four earned runs on five hits in two-thirds of an inning.