The Briar Cliff softball team had its first GPAC games of the season today, hosting Hastings at Bishop Mueller Field. After dropping game one by a final score of 6-5, the Cliff bounced back with a 6-3 victory in game two. The Chargers are now 4-15 overall and 1-1 in the GPAC this year, while Hastings moved to 6-16 overall and 1-1 in conference games.
The story of game one was a five run second inning by Hastings. Briar Cliff led 1-0 after the first inning before Hastings erupted for five runs to go up 5-1. The Chargers then chipped away at the deficit, scoring once in the bottom of the second inning and then tacked on two more runs in the fourth inning, thanks to Bailey Nichols doubling to score Brooke French and Nichols later scored on a single by Nicole Wiles to make the score 5-4 in favor of the Broncos. Briar Cliff then tied the game at 5-5 in the bottom of the fifth when Codie Fineran scored on a Hastings error. The Broncos then scored the eventual game-winning run in the top of the sixth to notch the 6-5 win.
Both teams had eight hits in the game and Hastings was able to overcome five errors despite the Cliff having zero errors. French led BC at the dish with two hits, followed by Wiles, Summer Williams, Fineran, Isabella Gonzalez, Nicole Romero and Nichols with one hit each. Gonzalez, Lanae Shiley and Williams all pitched in the game for the Blue & Gold with Shiley recording three strikeouts and Gonzalez had two K’s while suffering the loss.
Williams then put together a stellar pitching performance in game two to propel the Chargers to the 6-3 victory. Williams gave up only four hits and three runs in 7.0 innings of work while retiring seven batters via strikeout. She gave up one run in the top of the first inning and two more in the top of the third before holding Hastings scoreless in the final four innings of the game. The Charger offense struggle for much of the game with one run in the first and another in the third but the bats came to life in the sixth inning for BC. Danielle Ullmann scored the first run of the big inning for the Cliff on a passed ball by Hastings. Rachele Heaton then stepped to the plate and belted a two-run single to center, scoring both French and Nichols. Williams then helped her own cause and put the Chargers up 6-3 with a single to center field to score Wiles. Williams then slammed the door on the Broncos in the seventh for the three-run win.
The Chargers outhit the Broncos 7-4 in the ball game and both teams had three errors. Wiles and Williams both accounted for two hits in the contest, while Madison Deane, Nichols and Heaton all had one hit. Williams also had two RBI and Wiles scored a team-high three times. Williams tossed a complete game four hitter in the win.
Briar Cliff will be at Bishop Mueller Field again on Tuesday afternoon, hosting Northwestern in a league doubleheader with game one beginning at 3 p.m.