OMAHA, Neb. — Jayci McGill‘s walk-off homer on the second pitch of the 10th inning lifted the Creighton softball team to a 7-6 extra innings win over Providence on Wednesday afternoon in the BIG EAST opener for the Bluejays. Creighton also defeated the Friars 3-2 during the second game of Wednesday’s doubleheader.
The Bluejays moved to 13-10 (2-0 BIG EAST), while Providence dropped to 5-18 (2-2 BIG EAST).
McGill, who finished game one 3-for-5 with two runs and three RBIs, made freshman Kiele Miller a winning pitcher after the freshman starred in relief. Miller allowed just one run in six innings inside the circle, striking out a season-high 10.
Megan McCune was a hard-luck loser. She threw eight innings of relief and allowed five hits, three runs (two earned) and struck out five.
Creighton sent 10 women to the plate in the opening inning to bolt to a 4-0 advantage. Sam Crowley singled with one out and moved to second on a walk by Kelli Finan. Hope Moreno‘s single loaded the bases, and the Jays went ahead 1-0 on McGill’s single that caught Friars first baseman Julianne Rurka leaning the wrong way as the ball skidded through the right side. Finan scored on a fielder’s choice off the bat of Jordyn Sturgeon when a throw home from the Friar third basemen was dropped by the catcher. The lead stretched to 3-0 on Mileah McKelvy‘s RBI groundout, and pinch-hitter Mikaela Pechar‘s single to center capped the early scoring binge.
The Bluejays tacked on their fifth run in the early innings when Crowley reached after being hit by a pitch to start the second frame, moved to third on a Moreno single, and scored on McGill’s second RBI single of the day.
The Friars answered with a five-run fourth inning, chasing Bluejay starter Bryana Clark, and tying the game. Mackensie Compton had a two-run single, and Rurka blasted a game-tying home run two batters later.
Neither team dented the scoreboard again until the ninth inning, when Compton homered to left to give Providence its first lead of the day at 6-5. The Bluejays answered that tally with one of their own. Ashley Cantu doubled to left and raced to third on an error to open the inning, then came across home plate as the tying run on Crowley’s sac fly to center.
After Miller retired Providence on nine pitches in the top of the 10th inning, McGill launched her second homer of the season on the second pitch in the bottom of the inning, easily clearing the 10-foot high wall in center field at the Creighton Sports Complex.
During the second game of Wednesday’s doubleheader, Miller continued to sit down Friar hitters as she recorded her fourth complete game of the season and allowed only four hits and two unearned runs during Creighton’s 3-2 victory.
Providence scored the first run of game two with an RBI double following an error in the top of the first frame.
The Bluejays responded by scoring twice during the bottom half of the opening inning. Crowley reached first base after being hit by the pitch and later scored as McGill drove in her fourth run of the afternoon with a single through the left side. Hope Moreno grounded out to second base one batter after McGill to drive in Finan from third who reached on a fielder’s choice and advanced on the RBI single.
The Bluejays extended their advantage to two runs during the bottom of the third. Cantu singled to lead off the inning, advanced to second on a wild pitch, moved to third on a sacrifice bunt from Crowley and scored on a single by Finan to center field.
After zeros from both teams in the fourth and fifth innings, Providence scored one run on one hit and one error during the top of the sixth.
Creighton went down quietly in the bottom half of the sixth before Miller retired the Friars in order during the top of the seventh. Miller recorded her sixth strikeout of game two and 16th of the afternoon (10 in game one) to end the game. The freshman allowed seven hits and three runs (one earned) while walking zero batter and hitting one during 13.0 innings of work combined during the pair of games.
McGill extended her hit streak to a team-leading 13 games after she finished the day 4-for-8 with four RBIs and two runs scored.
Creighton and Providence will wrap up their three-game BIG EAST series with a single game on Thursday. First pitch on Thursday at the Creighton Sports Complex is scheduled for 11 a.m.