SALINA, Kan. – Saturday (Feb. 29)’s opponent had a 12-game head start on the Concordia University softball team, but it didn’t matter. Bulldog hitters combined for 23 hits (10 for extra bases) as the 2020 season opened with a doubleheader sweep of Kansas Wesleyan University (7-7) in Salina, Kan. Concordia won by scores of 12-4 and 11-2 in thumping the Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference foe.
This marks the start of Shawn Semler’s second season as head coach of the Bulldogs, who are coming off a 28-12 campaign in 2019. Concordia has hopes of competing for a conference title this spring.
“It actually started off a little scary,” Semler said. “The first time through the batting order we kind of struggled. Our kids made some great adjustments and took it from there. I was really pleased. We had some shaky moments defensively, but overall it was pretty amazing. A lot of kids produced. So many of them swung the bat well.”
The Bulldogs found themselves in a 2-0 hole after the first two innings of game one. They then struck for seven runs in the third inning. Camry Moore (two-run triple) and Regan Karel (three-run homer) supplied the major blows in the onslaught that set the tone for the day. Concordia also added five runs in the sixth, including two via a Moore double.
In game two, the Bulldogs never trailed while Tori Homolka, Karel, Moore, Kylee Nixon and Sydni Schernikau each collected two hits. Homolka and Nixon both drove in three runs. Moore doubled twice as part of her monster day at the plate. Concordia ran away with game two while notching two runs in the first, one in the third, four in the fourth and four in the fifth (enacting the eight-run rule).
On the day, Homolka, Karel and Moore pounded out four hits apiece. Moore (three doubles and a triple) batted in five runs and Homolka (a double and a triple) knocked in four. Moore also scored four runs.
In the circle, Moore and freshman Zoe Flores picked up a win apiece. Both young hurlers allowed just two earned runs. Flores struck out eight in her collegiate debut.
Said Semler, “The combo of those two can be really tough. They complement each other well. Zoe is the complete opposite of Camry. Zoe was lights out and Camry was Camry.”
Play on Sunday will shift to Lindsborg, Kan., for a 1 p.m. CT doubleheader at Bethany College. The twin bill had originally been scheduled to be played on Friday. The two programs last met up in 2018 when they split a doubleheader in Lindsborg in late February.