WINONA LAKE, Ind. - The HU softball team snapped its four-game losing skid Tuesday afternoon behind the powerful bats of Katie Bowers and Pazia Speed to sweep Grace College, 5-1, 5-2, at Miller Field.
With these wins, the Foresters improve to 21-13, 9-5 in the conference.
Following a slow start that saw the Lancers hold onto a 1-0 through the first four innings of play, the Foresters’ bats finally came to life in the top the fifth. Cristin Carter ignited the rally with a double down the right field line and Speed knocked her in with a base poke up the middle to knot the score at 1-1. Kendra DeRoo then brought in Speed, who had advanced to third on a wild throw on an earlier play, with a sacrifice fly that proved to be the game-winner.
Bowers then added the exclamation point by cranking one over the right field fence in the sixth and tripling in a run in the seventh to account for two the Foresters’ final three runs. She finished with two hits, scored a run and drove in two more to pace HU offensively. Speed finished with two hits, two runs scored and an RBI while Peyton Klinkhamer logged an RBI single to go along with a run scored.
Marcie McDougle started and gave up three hits, one run and no walks while striking out three over 3.1 innings. Molly Long came in on relief to pick up the win. In 3.2 innings on the hill, she scattered two hits, one run and one walk while striking out two.
Speed stole the show in game two when she cleared the bases in the top of the fourth with a grand slam over the center field fence to give HU command of the nightcap.
Just like game one, the Foresters found themselves in an early hole as Grace enjoyed a 1-0 lead through the first three innings but all that changed in the fourth. Carter got things rolling by driving in Brita Kuiper who had singled earlier in the inning and then Speed put the game away with her first collegiate four-bagger.
Long gave up five hits, one run and no walks while striking out ten to log the complete-game victory. With these two wins, she moves to 14-8 on the year.
The Foresters are back in action on Thursday when the travel to Indiana Tech for a 3:00 p.m. doubleheader.