GAME DAY: Softball wins rain or shine

Ella Hutzler prepares for a pitch during a game vs. Texas A&M International on March 22.

Jesse Blanchard / SEU Athletics

Ella Hutzler prepares for a pitch during a game vs. Texas A&M International on March 22.

St. Edward’s softball won their fifth and sixth games in a row over Texas A&M International with scores of 2-0 and 1-0 on March 22. Constant rain caused the second game of the series to be postponed a day. By the end of the series opener, the infield looked like a Monster Jam track.

GAME 1: St. Edward’s 2 Texas A&M Int’l. 0

Pitcher Cadie Currie was in the circle for the Hilltoppers in game one of the double header. She was brilliant, tossing a complete game shutout and holding the Dustdevils to four hits and striking them out four times. 

Lauren Hoyt led off the bottom of the third inning for the Hilltoppers with a bunt single. Alexis Massie moved her up to second base on a sacrifice bunt down the third base line. Hailey Sonka’s ground out to shortstop for the second out of the inning moved Hoyt over to third base. With two outs and a runner at third, Ari Vidales popped up to shortstop to end the inning. 

Katie Dillon would spark the bottom of the fifth inning with a leadoff bunt single. Megan Morris’ groundout to second allowed Dillon to advance to second base. Jerzie Pelham’s base hit to left field moved Dillon over to third and Pelham would advance to second on the throw to third base from the outfield. Putting runners on second and third with one out for Ella Hutzler. Hutzler came through with an RBI single to right field to put the Hilltoppers on the board 1-0. Hutzler was thrown out while stealing during the ensuing at bat, but Pelham would score on the throw to second to give the Hilltoppers a 2-0 lead. 

The Dustdevils would threaten the Hilltoppers’ lead in the top of the seventh inning. Kennedy Griego singled with one out in the top of the seventh. Nyomi Estrada subbed into the game as a pinch runner and made an instant impact, advancing to scoring position on a passed ball. Tajanae Davis’ single to right field moved Estrada to third, bringing up Victoria Maldonado, the go-ahead run. 

Maldonado ended the game by grounding into a 5-3-2 double play. Currie picked up her ninth win of the year, and Carla Arellano lost her fifth game. 

GAME 2: St. Edward’s 1 Texas A&M Int’l. 0

The dominance of the St. Edward’s softball pitching staff was exhibited on full display on March 22. 

McKenna Leamon, Kylen Padgett and Renna Toomey combined for a four hit shutout of the Texas A&M International Dustdevils. The Hilltoppers would waste no time getting on the board in game two. Pelham drove in Vidales with a two-out RBI single up the middle in the bottom of the first inning. Leamon started the game and looked good through two innings. She was pulled in the top of third after Maldonado singled to put runners on the corners with one out. 

Padgett relieved her and walked the leadoff batter she faced to load the bases with one out. She escaped the jam unscathed after inning-ending 5-2-3 double play off the bat of Griego. In the top of the sixth inning, the Dustdevils had runners on first and second with one out. This marked the end of Padgett’s day. 

After 3.0 innings of good work from the freshman, St. Edward’s Head Coach, Leah Glasgow, put the ball in Renna Toomey’s hands, and she answered the call immediately. She induced Davis to ground into an inning-ending double play to protect the Hilltoppers’ precious 1-0 lead. 

Maldonado led off the seventh inning for the Dustdevils with a single up the middle. Toomey struck out Eva Garcia and retired Bridgette Montes on a groundout, but the tying run moved up to second base. Katelyn Luera was inserted into the game to pinch hit for Felicity Bernal. With the tying run in scoring position, Luera ended the game on a groundout to third base. The Hilltoppers won 1-0 and swept the Dustdevils.