MOUNT VERNON, Ohio – The Forester softball team picked up a pair of road wins over Mount Vernon Nazarene University, 5-1, 5-3, Saturday afternoon to improve to 19-15-1 overall, 14-11 in league play. Today’s wins wrap up the regular season sweep over the Cougars (14-24, 8-18) as HU handed MVNU two losses back on March 21.
Lairen Miller was stellar on the mound in game one, giving up six hits for one run and allowing just one runner to advance beyond first aside from the fourth when the Cougars plated their run.
Offensively, Huntington registered ten hits with Audra Klopfenstein and Casey Lehman combining for seven of them. Leading off, Klopfenstein finished with three hits and scored once. Lehman was the No. 2 batter and was a perfect 4-for-4 at the plate while scoring once and driving in two runs.
The duo spearheaded HU’s first two runs. After Klopfenstein singled through the hole at shortstop and advanced to second by way of a passed ball, Lehman knocked her in with a single down the right field line. Lehman then eventually made her way home on Ashley Brown’s sacrifice fly for the early 2-0.
Lehman drove in her second run in the next frame by singling in Karley Blankenship who had posted a hit three batters earlier to up the lead to 3-0. It would stay that way until the fourth when the Cougars touched home on Sarah Boue’s sacrifice fly for a 3-1 difference.
Camille Furrow then capped off the contest with a two-run single in Huntington’s last at bat to extend the lead to a final gap of four.
Miller picked up a second win in the nightcap. After Furrow tossed the first four frames, giving up seven hits for three runs, Miller tossed three innings of scoreless relief to tally her tenth win of the season.
The Foresters were outhit by their hosts 11-6 but relied on timely hitting at the plate while making the necessary plays defensively, playing error-free ball, to limit the Cougars’ opportunities to touch home.
Lehman picked up where she left off to drive in her team’s first run in the opening frame with an RBI-single to right and then came around to score on Blankenship’s run-scoring shot to the other side of the field.
The game took a turn for a few innings after that as Mount Vernon scored twice in the third to knot things up at 2-2 and then took the lead in the fourth on a Cassidy Cain single. But there was no panic in Coach Gower’s crew – especially Lehman who stepped up again. This time she sent one to the gap in left-center to double in Natalie McGuire who had led off the fifth with a walk.
Kaley Kitts, Lehman’s courtesy runner, scored the go ahead run two batters later on Miller’s fielder’s choice. HU would go on to add an insurance run in the sixth by way of a missed catch and wild pitch for the 5-3 final.
Lehman finished with two hits and two RBI to pace HU offensively while Klopfenstein also finished with a pair of base pokes.
The Foresters will look to avenge two losses suffered to #RV Taylor University back on March 25 by hosting the Trojans on Tuesday at 3:00 p.m.
The Huntington University Foresters compete in 17 intercollegiate sports for men and women. In the past decade, Huntington has produced 38 NAIA All-America honors and 254 All-America Scholar Athlete honors. Huntington University is a comprehensive Christian college of the liberal arts offering graduate and undergraduate programs in more than 70 academic concentrations. U.S. News & World Report ranks Huntington among the best colleges in the Midwest.