The Westminster softball team loses the conference-opening doubleheader to Eureka College on Sunday afternoon. The Westminster Blue Jays comeback attempt fell just short in game one, ending with a 14-12 loss, and they were short-gamed in the sixth inning of game two, 16-7. They are now 7-12 on the season and start conference play with a 0-2 SLIAC record.
The Blue Jays went on the board first as junior Anne Baker crossed home plate off junior Erica Burney's RBI single to left field. Eureka scored three runs in the bottom of the first inning, but the Blue Jays answered back with three of their own in the top of the second. Sophomore Leah Holthaus hit a two RBI single to right field, bringing in freshman Caty Barrett and junior Alyssa Johnson, and Holthaus then crossed the plate with Baker's RBI triple to right field.
Eureka put up four runs in the bottom of the second and three more in the third to take a 10-4 lead.
Holthaus hit a single down the right field line to bring in sophomore Kim Morrison in the fourth inning, and Burney hit a RBI double to right field to score sophomore Amber Tepen and bring the game to 10-6.
In the bottom of the fifth, Eureka brought in two runs to take a 12-6 lead, but the Blue Jays scored two in the top of the sixth inning to bring the game back within four. With two outs, Holthaus singled to get on base, and Baker followed with a double to put both runners in scoring position. Tepen then came up and hit a two RBI double to bring in both.
Eureka scored two more runs in the bottom of the sixth to take a 14-8 lead with just one inning remaining.
Senior Shannon Perrigo led off the top of the seventh with a single up the middle. Johnson was walked, bringing Barrett up to the plate with one out, and she hit a RBI single up the middle. Freshman Kaylin Calton hit a single to left center, loading the bases for Holthaus at the top of the lineup. Holthaus hit a RBI single, and one batter later, Calton was walked home. The fourth and final run of the inning was walked in as well, but Eureka pulled out of the inning by striking out the final batter and ending the game at 14-12.
The Blue Jay offense finished with 18 hits and six extra base hits. Holthaus went 4-for-5 from the plate with four RBI and three runs, while Barrett went 3-for-4.
Hahn (3-4) was credited with the loss in the circle. She pitched the complete game and struck out five batters.
The Blue Jays took a 1-0 lead to start the second game with a RBI double by Tepen. The team added four more runs in the third inning. Holthaus came home on Baker's RBI single, and Baker was brought in with Burney's home run. Perrigo then came up to the plate and smashed a home run to take a 5-0 lead.
In the bottom of the third, Eureka put up three runs to bring the game to 5-3.
The Blue Jays hit their third home run of the game as Johnson led off the fourth inning with one. The team scored their second run of the inning with a RBI single from Tepen to right center.
Eureka put up seven runs on seven hits in the fourth inning to take a 10-7 lead. They added two more in the fifth and ended the game early in the sixth inning with a three-run walk-off home run.
Of the Blue Jay's eight hits, five were extra base hits. Burney, Perrigo and Johnson each recorded a home run. Baker and Tepen each went 2-for-3 from the plate with a double.
Perrigo (4-5) was credited with the loss in the circle. She pitched 4.1 innings and struck out four batters. Junior Kat Cooper came in as relief and pitched .2 of an inning. Hahn finished out the game.
The Blue Jays travel to St. Louis, Mo. on Wednesday, April 6, for their second set of conference games versus Webster University. First pitch is at 5:00 pm.