The Shippensburg University softball team had a good week of action, winning four of its six games, which were capped by a doubleheader sweep of Millersville University on Saturday.
The Raiders (19–13, 4–2 PSAC) showed their heart and desire to win when the team came from behind in Game 1 of Saturday’s Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference (PSAC) doubleheader to win, 6–5.
Going into the bottom of the seventh inning, the Raiders were down 6–1. Freshman Lacey Hunter began the rally with a double, then scored on a single by junior Kayla Bonawitz. Freshman Hannah Marsteller drove the ball over the center-field fence for a three-run homer that tied the game at five. It was the seventh homer of the season for Marsteller.
Freshman Grace Palmieri then singled and — two batters later — was driven home on an RBI double from freshman Hannah Johnson to win the game.
The Raiders followed up their Game 1 dramatics with an all-around solid performance in Game 2 against Millersville (16-21, 1-5 PSAC), winning 4–1. Game 2 was close until the fourth inning, when junior Meghan Klee drove in two with a home run — the fourth of her career.
It was a good day at the plate for the Raiders, who totaled 18 hits and struck out three times. Hunter and Bonawitz each finished the day with three hits, an RBI and two stolen bases.
The Raiders’ pitching also had a tremendous day on Saturday. Senior Taryn Wilson pitched just more than seven innings, allowing four runs and striking out 14 hitters. She picked up her first save of the season in Game 2 and her 10th win of the season in Game 1. Freshman Tressa Kagarise had a fantastic outing in Game 2, tossing six innings and allowing no earned runs while striking out eight Marauders.
SU’s week began with a non-conference doubleheader split on Tuesday against Lock Haven University.
The team’s bats struggled in Game 1 against Bekah Slattery, Lock Haven starter and two-time PSAC Central Division Pitcher of the Year.
The team only managed to get three hits against Slattery, but two of them were extra-base hits that came from sophomore Courtney Coy. Coy hit a solo home run and later doubled in the seventh inning.
Down 3–2, the Raiders were not able to push Coy across to score and tie the game. Slattery struck out the final two batters of the game to preserve the 3–2 win for the Bald Eagles in the first matchup of the day.
Shippensburg responded in the rematch, winning 4–2. The team tacked on runs in the second, third and fourth innings of the game, beginning with a two-RBI double by Johnson. In the third, Coy drove in a run with another double, her second of the day.
Wilson threw every inning of the doubleheader against Lock Haven, allowing five runs while striking out 18.
The Raiders continued their week with a split of a conference doubleheader against Kutztown University (20-13, 5-3 PSAC) on Thursday. The doubleheader was originally scheduled for Friday, but due to inclement weather, the games were moved up to Thursday.
Shippensburg won the first game, 6–4, behind strong efforts from Bonawitz, Hunter and freshman Morgan DeFeo. They each totaled three hits, combining for all of the team’s hits in Game 1, and stole a combined five bases.
The second matchup of the tie was a different story for the Raider offense. It struggled to the tune of only two hits, losing 6–0. The team’s only hits were a single by Palmieri and a double by Marsteller.
The Raiders’ bats over the last couple of weeks have been led by Hunter and Bonawitz. Hunter, over the last 10 games, is hitting .370 and has driven in five runs while also stealing four bags. Bonawitz —who is hitting .364 and has scored eight runs over the last 10 games —has been a rock at the top of the order for Shippensburg. She now has a career-high 11 steals as well.
Up next for the Raiders are two road doubleheaders, one against Shepherd University on Tuesday and the other against PSAC rival East Stroudsburg University (18-16, 1-3 PSAC) on Friday.