Softball’s schneid is over with three wins in two days

Junior+Emma+Gurley+hitting+during+John+Carroll%27s+victory+on+Saturday+afternoon+over+Wilmington+at+Bracken+Field

JCU Sports Information

Junior Emma Gurley hitting during John Carroll’s victory on Saturday afternoon over Wilmington at Bracken Field

Ashley McCall, Staff Reporter

The 15-game losing streak is in the rearview mirror.

This past weekend, the John Carroll University Softball Team bested the Wilmington College Fighting Quakers in a two-day double-header format, winning three of the four games played on Saturday, April 24, and Sunday, April 25.

The Blue Streaks improved to 7-22 on the season with Saturday and Sunday’s victories.

Game 1

The Fighting Quakers took command of the game from the start after a 3-run home run that gave Wilmington a lead in the top of the first inning. 

The Blue and Gold took the field in the bottom of the first inning with sophomore Gracie Bressound first up to bat. She singled down the left-field line, which was followed by a walk from junior Kasyn Scarantine. The Blue Streaks advanced around the diamond with the help of a two RBI single from Jess Lichota, cutting Wilmington’s lead to 3-2. 

After the first inning, sophomore pitcher Katelyn DeBord didn’t give up another run to the Fighting Quakers for the next six innings, holding Wilmington scoreless for the rest of the contest. 

John Carroll earned two more runs in the bottom of the second. Junior Crista Nativio notched a single and then advanced to second with another Bressound single. The two finally crossed home plate when junior Emma Gurley had a two-RBI base knock with two outs in the inning. 

By the start of the third inning, the Blue Streaks led Wilmington 4-3, which was the final score of the game.

Game 2

The Fighting Quakers looked for revenge on the Blue Streaks in the second game, taking a 1-0 lead on a sacrifice fly that scored Megan Crager. 

The Blue and Gold did not let this stop their momentum. Gurley homered to left field, tying the game up at 1-1 after the first inning. 

Similar to the previous game, Wilmington was held scoreless after the first inning, this time by freshman Danielle Orendi, who pitched lights out the rest of the contest. She finished with six strikeouts and only allowed four hits throughout all seven innings pitched

Adding one more run by the bottom of the second, sophomore Maddie Traub scored for John Carroll on a wild pitch, taking the lead 2-1.

Bressoud and Scarantine made it around the diamond one more time during the game at the bottom of the third, from a ground sacrifice by Gurley and a Traub single, respectively.

 John Carroll took the win with a final score of 4-1. 

Game 3 

The Blue Streaks scoring momentum from Saturday continued into Sunday, as John Carroll was the first to score in the third matchup of the series. 

In the top of the third inning, the Blue and Gold gained a 3-0 lead as Bressound, Navitio and Scarantine rounded home plate after a team effort the entire inning. 

DeBord remained stable on the mound, holding Wilmington to no runs, just in time for another Blue Streak score. 

Sophomore Lauren Sienkiewicz singled to the pitcher and advanced to second. Nativio bunted during her next at-bat. Bressound singled to the pitcher, sending Sienkiewicz to third, who finally scored on an error by the Fighting Quakers’ catcher. 

DeBord steered the ship straight the rest of the contest, keeping Wilmington scoreless and earning a Blue and Gold victory for the third straight time this series. 

Game 4

The Blue Streaks kept the momentum rolling at the beginning of the weekend’s final game, as Gurley scored in the first inning off a Kristen Jesberger double RBI.

Wilmington responded with two runs at the bottom of the first inning to take a 2-1 lead. 

The Fighting Quakers’ offense kept rolling, scoring another run in the bottom of the second and two more runs in the bottom of the fourth, advancing their lead to 5-1. 

It wouldn’t be until the top of the sixth inning that John Carroll scored again, this time from freshman Gabby Hougan as she crossed home plate. 

With two quick retaliation scores, Wilmington furthered their lead to 7-2 by the bottom of the sixth. 

With hope left for the seventh inning, Bressound bunted and made it to first base. She stole second and advanced to third on an error by the Fighting Quakers’ catcher, scoring on that play as well. 

The Blue and Gold were not able to score again and finished the game behind Wilmington 7-3. 

“This weekend we took some huge steps in improving not just our physical play, but also our mindsets,” said John Carroll Softball Head Coach Nicole Loudin. “These were three complete team wins against a very solid Wilmington program. I am very proud of what the team did and how they are letting the adversity of this entire year make them stronger!”

With the OAC Tournament around the corner, the John Carroll Softball Team will look to continue their success as they faceoff against the Heidelberg University Student Princes on Saturday, May 1, and Sunday, May 2, in the typical four-game series.