Rio Grande, Ohio- The Lawrence Technological (Mich.) University softball team split their Sunday, March 24 doubleheader against (RV) University of Rio Grande (Ohio). The Blue Devils defeated the Red Storm in the second game, 1-0, and fell 5-2 in the first game.
In the second game, Lawrence Tech (18-2, 0-0) and Rio Grande (18-10, 8-0) were in a pitchers' duel as both teams combined on 14 runners left on base. Sydney Schultz(JR/Commerce Twp, Mich.) and Brittney Bult (JR/Brampton, Ontario) teamed up to shutout the Red Storm. Schultz started on the circle and pitched for two innings, in which she surrendered no hits and three walks. Schultz struck out one of the five batters she faced. Bult pitched in relief of Schultz for five innings. Bult allowed four hits and no walks and sat down two off 18 batters.
Brittany Wieland (SO/Alexandria, Va.) scored the lone run of the game in the seventh inning. The Blue Devils collected seven hits, led by Sarah Hige (FR/Northville, Mich.) as she went 2-for-4. Katie Cyster (SO/Wyandotte, Mich.), Meredith Adams (JR/Portage, Mich. ), Wieland, and Alex Amos (JR/Corona, Calif.) recorded team-high four putouts apiece.
Schultz stranded two runners on base in the first inning and one in the second. Kelsey Conkey of Rio Grande allowed three hits and left three runners on base over the same innings. The pitching continued being strong during the four innings that followed as Bult and Conkey only allowed five hits combined. It was at the top of the seventh inning that Hige drove in Wieland off a single. Bult shut down the Red Storm over the final innings to hold on to a 1-0 win.
In the first game, Alexa Cherney (JR/Farmington Hills, Mich. ) toed the rubber for four and two-thirds innings in which she sat down seven of the 18 batters she faced. Cherney allowed five runs off four hits and two walks. Schultz pitched for one and a third innings and allowed no runs and no hits, and struck out one of the four batters she faced.
Hige and Adams scored on the Blue Devils side, driven in by Andra Malburg (SO/Maineville, Ohio) and Wieland. Bult paced the squad with two hits off three at-bats. Amos led the team with eight putouts.
Lawrence Tech took an early lead at the top of the first inning when Malburg drove in Hige. Adams then pushed the Blue Devil lead to 2-0 off a single by Wieland. Rio Grande built a comeback in the bottom of the inning and took the 3-2 lead. The Red Storm sealed the 5-2 victory in the fifth inning with two home runs that led to two runs.
The Blue Devils will be back in action on Wednesday, March 27 when they face Madonna (Mich.) University in their first Wolverine-Hoosier Athletic Conference outing of the season. The first game of the doubleheader is set to start at 3:30 p.m.