BETHANY, W.Va. – Capital Softball blasted a total of four homeruns, two hit by LeAnna Cotton, and cranked out 21 runs as part of a midweek sweep of Bethany College. The Crusaders defeated the Bison by scored of 12-5 and 9-0 (F/6) on Thursday afternoon.
GAME 1 – Capital 12, Bethany 5
Senior Maura Rose (Williamsport, Pa.) and LeAnna Cotton (Okeechobee, Fla.) propelled the Capital offense, each going 3-for-4 at the plate and each tallying one home run and two RBIs.
The long ball bombardment began in the first inning when went deep to left for her seventh of the season, giving Capital an early one-run lead. That homer tied her with Rose for the team lead, but it was short-lived.
In the bottom of the fourth inning, Rose stepped to the plate and launched a solo shot to left field to double up the lead. Two batters later, Junior Therese Becker (South Euclid, Ohio) hit her second home run of the year, also a solo blast, to increase the lead to 3-0.
The middle of the lineup rose up once again in the sixth, helping the Crusaders score three runs on four consecutive hits. With runners on second and third, senior Alyssa Patznick (Newark, Ohio) drove home one run with a single to center. Becker followed with a run-scoring single, elevating the lead to 5-1. Capital then induced a rundown on a first-and-third situation to help pinch runner Sarah Stafford scored on the play.
While Bethany plated two in the bottom half of the sixth, Capital's six-run seventh inning sealed the deal for the Crusaders. Four walks and four base hits in the inning resulted in Capital batting through the order. Cotton, Rose and Amber Martinelli (Allison Park, Pa.) both recorded run-scoring hits in the inning, blowing up the lead to 12-5.
Martinelli (W, 6-0) took to the circle and remains undefeated after tossing a complete game in which she allowed four earned runs and struck out five.
GAME 2 – Capital 9, Bethany 0 (Final/6)
Game two of the doubleheader ended an inning early with the combination of Brooke Billings (Clyde, Ohio) and Bree Kilgus (Grove City, Ohio) kept the Bison off of the board while the offense continued to produce runs.
Capital scored in each of the first four innings, plating a run in each of the first three before putting up a three-run fourth inning. Rose doubled home Kelsey Swain in the first and in the second, Becker found herself in scoring position by way of a single and a wild pitch before Patznick singled her home. Becker then drove home Rose in the third with a two-out double to right-center field.
Capital blasted two more home runs in the fourth, aiding in boosting their lead to 6-0. Sophomore Kat Boyer (Huber Heights, Ohio) led the inning off with her first career homer. With two outs on the board and one runner on, Cotton blasted her second home run of the day.
In the circle, Billings worked out of a few jams that left multiple runners on base and two in scoring position. While errors put two of her four runners on base, Billings and defense worked to exit each frame without a scratch. She struck out three hitters in the first inning and forced five fly outs and a double play to work out of trouble.
Billings then gave way to Kilgus for her pitched innings with the Crusaders. The freshman tossed a 1-2-3 sixth to end the game by run rule, 9-0.
Cotton now holds a share of the league lead for home runs and is in sole possession of first in batting average (.515) and RBIs (57) in the OAC.
Capital now stands at 23-8 overall and will take its 12-2 OAC record to University Heights, Ohio for a doubleheader with John Carroll University on Saturday. With one win over the Blue Streaks, they will claim their place in the upcoming OAC Softball Tournament. With two wins, they will seal at least a second seed in the tournament. First pitch is set for 1 p.m.