Huntington extends win streak to eight by sweeping Comets
Long one out away from a no-hitter
OLIVET, Mich. - The Forester softball team continues to build momentum as they extended their win streak to eight by picking up a pair of non-conference wins at Olivet College Thursday afternoon, 2-0, 16-4.
With two outs in the top of the seventh of game one, it looked like Molly Long would cap off her dazzling display on the mound with a no-hitter but Olivet shortstop Alison Iuelle proved to be the spoiler as she singled to left center on a 3-1 count to deny the HU ace the sport’s rarity.
Long issued one walk while striking out ten to round out her near-perfect effort on the hill.
Her teammates backed her up at the plate by making the most of their four hits. Freshman Kaitlyn Troyer set the stage for HU’s first run with a single to right in the top of the third. Several batters later Peyton Klinkhamer tripled to right center to knock in her classmate and give the Foresters a 1-0 lead. The Foresters wrapped up the contest with an insurance run in the seventh when Klinkhamer delivered her second RBI-hit of the day for the 2-0 victory.
Klinkhamer accounted for the majority of the Foresters’ offense with two hits and two RBI. Troyer and Katie Bowers were the only other Foresters to collect a hit on the day.
After struggling at the plate in game one, HU’s bats came to life in the nightcap as the Foresters went 16-for-35 as a team to run away with the game.
After Brita Kuiper and Lindsay Shellabarger recorded back-to-back singles to open the second inning, Karen Bollenbacher drove in a run with a double to left. A Comet throwing error allowed Shellabarger to scamper home and Cristin Carter capped off the inning with a sacrifice fly to give HU the early 3-0 lead.
HU extended the lead to five in the next frame on a run-scoring single by Kuiper and Shellabarger’s sacrifice fly to center but the Comets, behind Iuelle’s three-run shot over the left field fence, came roaring back in their half of the inning to close within one at 5-4.
Katie Bowers answered by sending one long in the top of the fifth to ignite a flurry of activity as the Foresters hammered out two more hits and took advantage of two errors to plate three more runs and take a commanding 9-4 lead.
HU blew the game wide open in the top of the seventh by batting around the order and scoring seven times. Kuiper, playing in front of her hometown crowd, started things off with a single up the middle and then capped off the inning by driving in the Foresters’ final run of the night to give her fans plenty to cheer about. Bowers and Katie Knous highlighted the inning with back-to-back doubles to drive in two runs apiece on the way to the 16-4 blowout.
Kuiper went 4-for-5 from the plate to pace Huntington offensively. She also scored three runs and drove in two more while Bowers, Knous, Klinkhamer and Amy Snider each added two hits apiece.
Marcie McDougle went the distance on the mound to record her third win of the season. She gave up four runs, two earned, on six hits and two walks while striking out two.
The Foresters improve to 10-4. They head back up to the Wolverine State on Saturday to take on Siena Heights University at 1:00 p.m.