The Heidelberg University softball team takes two games from non-conference foe Ohio Wesleyan to get back above .500. The Student Princes downed the Battling Bishops 6-3 in the first game followed by a convincing 10-2 victory in the second contest.
Heidelberg jumped out to an early lead in the first contest with three runs in the first inning. Junior centerfielder Jami Wagner (Alvada/New Reigel) laid down a bunt to lead off the game for the Berg and was advanced to second when Kayla Zachrich (Defiance/Ayersville) grounded out to first base.
Freshman first baseman Marissa Smego (Parma/Trinity) laced a single up the middle moving Wagner to third and advancing to second on a throwing error. With two runners in scoring position, freshman catcher Mikaela Mitsch (McHenry, IL.) belted her third home run of the season to left field.
The Berg added another run in the top of the third inning that began with Wagner slapping a lead off double. Zachrich popped out to first base on the ensuing at bat but Wagner advanced to third on a fielding.
Smego hit another single up the middle scoring Wagner and propelling the Berg to a 4-0 lead heading into the bottom of the third inning.
Senior ace Ali Sayre (Sylvania/Northview) threw her fifth complete game of the season facing 35 batters and surrendering three runs, none of which were earned. Sayre owns an ERA of 2.38 through 12 appearances and 53 innings. The veteran lefty has struck out 19 and walked only five.
Nicola Gabriele (Boardman) led off the Berg half of the fifth with a strikeout that was followed by another Wagner single. Zachrich followed the Wagner single with a double of her own, scoring Wagner from first.
The Berg added another run in the fifth when Zachrich scored from second on another Smego single up the middle.
Sayre held Ohio Wesleyan scoreless until the bottom of the seventh when the Battling Bishops dropped three runs on the Berg in a would-be rally.
Gabriele took the mound for the Student Princes in the second contest throwing seven compete innings. The outing marks her second complete game of the season.
In her freshman campaign, Nicola has thrown 50.1 innings, surrendering 14 earned runs but collecting a team-high 32 strikeouts. Gabriele owns an ERA of 1.95.
The Berg scored ten unanswered runs in the second game that began with a single by Lydia Stover (Morris City/Olney Central College) that was followed by a Lisa Simmons (Westerville/Westerville North) single to the shortstop.
Freshman third baseman Bri Siden (New Philadelphia) doubled into right center scoring Stover from third and Simmons from first.
The Student Princes extended their lead to 3-0 in the third inning when Smego flied out to center field scoring Wagner from third. Another run in the fourth gave the Berg a 4-0 advantage before their three run fifth inning.
Wagner began the inning with a double to left field, advancing to third on a pass ball. Zachrich reached on a fielder’s choice scoring Wagner from third. Down 5-0, the Battling Bishops made defensive changes before Smego ripped another single, advancing to third on a throwing error and scoring Zachrich.
Smego scored on the next play when Mitsch reached first on a fielder’s choice to the shortstop.
The Student Princes scored three more runs in the top of the seventh to extend their lead to 10-0 before the Bishops scored two of their own in the bottom of the seventh.
With the sweep of Ohio Wesleyan the Student Princes and fifth year head coach Betsy Hada move to 10-8 overall and remain 0-4 in the Ohio Athletic Conference.
The Berg’s next opponent is Muskingum University on Saturday, April 6. Game one is slated for 2:00 p.m. from Tiffin.
The Heidelberg ladies will be celebrating Community Day that afternoon with festivities and entertainment for all ages beginning at 1:00 p.m. from Jocko Huffman Field in Hedges-Boyer Park.