Wildcat softball splits again in Florida

The Wayne State softball team went 1-1 for the third straight day in action at the National Training Center Spring Games in Clermont, Fla., defeating Stonehill (Mass.) 3-2 and losing a nine-inning battle with Lewis University (Ill.), 14-11.

In the opener, Wayne native Abbie Hix went 2-for-3 at the plate with a pair of RBI while freshman pitcher Maddie Moser tossed a complete game with six strikeouts to highlight the Wildcat victory.

Wayne State opened the scoring in the top of the second as Alyx Hagen walked and scored on a Hix single to give the Wildcats a 1-0 lead.

The Skyhawks took a 2-1 lead with a pair of runs in the third inning on three hits and one Wildcat error. The score stayed that way until the sixth, when the Wildcats used three doubles to score a pair of runs to take the lead. Hagen led off the frame with a double to center with pinch-runner Sarah Hunter scoring on a Hix two-bagger to even the score at 2-2. Hix then scored the go-ahead run on a Taylor Menard double, giving Wayne State the lead for good.

Stonehill tried to rally in the bottom of the seventh by putting two runners on base with two outs, but Moser got the final out on a fly ball to right field to end the game and give Wayne State the win.

Hix was 2-for-3 with a single, double and two RBI. Hagen, Annie Grammer and Menard each doubled with Morgan Vasa adding a single. Moser improved to 2-2 on the season with her second complete-game win on the Florida trip. The freshman from Central City allowed two runs on seven hits with six strikeouts and three walks.

In the second game of the day, the Wildcats took Lewis University of Illinois to extra innings before losing to fall to 4-7 on the season.

The Flyers scored six runs in the first inning and two more in the second for an 8-0 lead, but Wayne State battled back with a six-run second inning, highlighted by Emily Chandler’s three-run homer.  Rachel Shumaker also tripled in the inning. The Wildcats added another run in the third to trim the lead to 8-7 as Hix doubled and scored on a single by Ashley Hernandez.

Lewis scored single runs in the fourth and sixth innings to take a 10-7 lead, but the Wildcats came back with two in the bottom of the sixth to make the score 10-9. Baylee Rial’s double scored Katelyn Wobken, with Rial scoring on an RBI groundout from Shumaker.

Wayne State tied the game in the bottom of the seventh when Jordyn Breitbarth homered with one out, sending the game into extra innings tied at 10-10.

Both teams scored in the eighth to make the score 11-11. Hagen’s single scored Rial for the Wildcat run in the eighth. But the Flyers struck for three runs in the top of the ninth while holding the Wildcats scoreless in the bottom of the frame for the 14-11 victory.

Wobken finished 4-for-5 with four singles and two runs scored. Hagen was 2-for-4 with a pair of singles while Shumaker went 2-for-5 with a triple and RBI. Chandler and Breitbarth each homered, with Chandler recording three RBI.

Junior starter Riley Vanderveen (1-3) was tagged with the pitching loss, working 5 1/3 innings. Reliever Allison Niemeier worked 3 2/3 innings of the contest in the circle.

Wayne State will play two more games on Thursday to close out play on their annual spring break trip to Florida, battling Mercyhurst (Pa.) at 8 a.m. and Findlay (Ohio) at 10:30 a.m.

The Wayne Herald

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