LEAVENWORTH, Kan. – The Southwestern College softball team dropped a pair of Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference contests Saturday afternoon in Leavenworth. The Lady Builders fell to the Spires of the University of Saint Mary, 9-2, 9-1, at the USM Softball Field.
Game 1 – Saint Mary 9, Southwestern 2
Southwestern (10-27, 5-14 KCAC) stranded 11 runners on base, and managed just two runs on 13 hits in Saturday's opener. Saint Mary (20-26, 9-8 KCAC) scored a combined seven runs over the second and third innings, and cruised to the 9-2 victory.
Facing a 3-0 deficit, Southwestern put itself on the board in the third inning. With one out, Paige Hall singled up the middle, then moved to second on a Peyton Timmerman single to left. Whytleigh Guerrero singled through the left side to load the bases for Remington Samuels, who dropped a single into shallow left-center, and sent Hall across the plate. But back-to-back fielder's choice plays ended the inning with the bases loaded.
Saint Mary added four more runs in the third inning to take a 7-1 lead, but the Lady Builders got one back in the fifth. Megan Walentynowicz doubled through the left-centerfield gap, then scored on a deep single from Alejandra Palacios to cut the USM advantage to 7-2, but another fielder's choice ended the inning.
USM responded with a run in the fifth, and added another in the sixth to push its lead to 9-2. The Lady Builders left four runners on base over the final two frames, and fell by the 9-2 final score.
Five different Lady Builders recorded multiple-hit games in Saturday's opener. Peyton Timmerman, Remington Samuels, Megan Walentynowicz and Alejandra Palacios each finished 2-for-4 at the plate, while Paige Hall was 2-for-3. Walentynowicz and Hall each scored runs for the Lady Builders, while Samuels and Palacios each finished with an RBI.
Allison Flinn pitched the entire game for Southwestern. The junior allowed nine runs (seven earned) on 13 hits with a walk in the complete game effort.
Game 2 – Saint Mary 9, Southwestern 1 (5 Innings)
Southwestern (10-28, 5-15 KCAC) found itself in a similar position against the Spires in Saturday's second game. The Lady Builders recorded just four hits, but stranded nine runners, while Saint Mary (21-26, 10-8 KCAC) scored nine runs on 12 hits en route to the 9-1, run-rule victory.
The Spires struck first with a first-inning run. Southwestern answered in the second, when Alex Ritzema reached on a bobble by the Saint Mary shortstop. The freshman then stole second before advancing to third on Allison Flinn's sacrifice bunt. Peyton Timmerman laced a single to left field to send Ritzema home, and tied the game at 1-1.
Saint Mary regained the lead with a three-run third inning, then added five more runs in the fifth inning to end the game via the eight-run mercy rule, 9-1.
Peyton Timmerman went 2-for-3 at the plate, and was the only Lady Builder to record multiple hits in the contest.
Freshman starter Lauren Syrup allowed nine runs on 12 hits with three strikeouts and two walks in 4.2 innings in Saturday's second game.
The Playoff Picture…
Saturday's sweep put a significant dent in Southwestern's hopes to advance to next week's KCAC Softball Championships. The Lady Builders are currently tied for 10th, but are just one game out of a tie for the final spot in the tournament. Southwestern must sweep Kansas Wesleyan on Tuesday to have a chance to sneak in.
Next Up for the Lady Builders…
Southwestern will travel to Salina on Tuesday to face the Coyotes of Kansas Wesleyan University. First pitch is scheduled for 4 p.m. at Bill Burke Park, Field No. 6.