Concordia University and Doane College split two softball games on Wednesday in Crete. Concordia rallied for an 8-6 win in game one, and Doane picked up a 4-3 win in nine innings in game two. Following the split, Concordia moved to 23-13 overall and 12-6 in the GPAC. Doane moved to 12-21 overall and 9-7 in the GPAC.
Doane College used a huge first inning to take an early lead in game one. Gina Falciani walked with one out in the inning, and a single by Christy Kobza put runners at first and second. A passed ball advanced the runners to second and third. Brooke Sampson followed with an RBI infield single to plate Falciani. Following a stolen base by Sampson, Shelby Mendlik drove in two with a single up the middle. Kylie Garrett added an RBI single, and Amber Stater’s RBI double put Doane on top by the score of 5-0.
Concordia scored five runs of their own in the top of the third. Shelby Morose (Claremore, Okla.) singled with one out. Nicole Baker (Arvada, Colo.) followed with her fifth homer of the year to pull the Bulldogs within three. Concordia kept the pressure on, as Natalie Svoboda (Lincoln, Neb.) followed with a double. Following an intentional walk to Clarissa Eloge (Rising City, Neb.), Mikaela Klein (Grand Island, Neb.) delivered an RBI single to score Svoboda. Eloge also scored via error on the play, and Concordia trailed by just one at 5-4. Klein’s hit forced Doane starter Megan Wingate out of the game. An RBI single by Alyssa Bauwens (Perryville, Mo.) tied the game at 5-5.
The Bulldogs grabbed the lead with a single run in the top of the fifth. Svoboda reached on an error to lead off the inning. Following a sacrifice bunt by Eloge, an RBI double by Klein gave Concordia a 6-5 lead. Doane quickly responded in the bottom of the fifth. Kobza led off the inning with a single, and a double by Mendlik put runners at second and third with one out. A sacrifice fly by Alyssa Maraia tied the game at 6-6.
In the top of the seventh, Concordia took an 8-6 advantage on a 2-run homer by Klein. Svoboda reached on a single with one out. Following a fielder’s choice, Klein’s fifth homer of the year turned out to be the game-winner for the Bulldogs.
Amanda Beeson (Waverly, Neb.) improved to 6-5 on the year with the win. She settled down after allowing the five runs on five hits in the first inning. Beeson allowed the six runs on 11 hits with two walks and four strikeouts. Klein was the offensive star of game one. She went 3-for-4 with a run scored and four RBI’s.
Jenna Alswager suffered the loss in relief for Doane. Mendlik went 3-for-4 with two RBI’s for the Tigers in the loss.
Concordia took an early lead in game two. In the top of the first, Baker was hit by a pitch and stole second. Later in the inning, the combination of Eloge and Klein came through again. The duo delivered back-to-back RBI doubles to put Concordia on top 2-0. In the top of the second, Nicole Mapes (Greeley, Colo.) hit her first homer of the season to increase the Concordia lead to 3-0.
The score remained the same until the bottom of the fourth. Mendlik led off the inning with her ninth homer of the season for the Tigers, and Concordia’s lead was cut to two at 3-1.
Doane tied the game in the fifth inning. Kati Mosley reached on an error to lead off the inning. An RBI single by Falciani later in the inning scored Mosley to make the score 3-2. Following a walk to Mendlik, Kobza scored Falciani with an RBI single. The throw beat Falciani to home plate. However, the ball was knocked loose from Amber Topil’s (Seward, Neb.) glove, and the game was tied at 3-3.
Concordia missed a golden opportunity in the sixth. The Bulldogs placed runners at first and second with nobody out. However, back-to-back strikeouts and a pop out ended the inning with no damage done.
The game went to extra innings, and Doane picked up the win in the bottom of the ninth. Andrea Gonzales had an infield single with one out in the inning. Falciani followed with an RBI double to right center. Gonzales scored from first, and Doane secured the 4-3 win.
Doane finished with eight hits in the game compared to just four for Concordia. The Bulldogs struggled offensively after the first two innings. Defensive mistakes also proved very costly for Concordia in the loss, as the Bulldogs committed five errors in the contest.
Kylie Garrett picked up the win on the mound and improved to 5-4. She went the distance, allowing the three runs and four hits with no walks and four strikeouts. Falciani went 3-for-4 with two RBI’s and a run scored for Doane offensively.
Nicole Sempek (Columbus, Neb.) dropped to 12-5 on the year with the loss. She allowed the four runs, but only two of the runs were earned. Sempek walked two and struck out three in 8.1 innings of work. Eloge went 2-for-4 with an RBI and a run scored for the Bulldogs in the loss.
Concordia travels to Morningside College and Mount Marty College on April 29 and 30.