Belles Claim Game Two to Split with Knights

Game One Box Score
Game Two Box Score

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. - The Saint Mary's softball team came from behind to win game two 3-2 after falling 8-2 in game one in a conference doubleheader at Calvin on Tuesday afternoon.

In the opener, the Knights plated three two-out runs in the bottom of the first inning on a batter hit by a pitch, a single, and a home run to stake a claim to the early lead.

The Belles cut into the Knights' lead right away in the top of the second inning. Callie Selner led off the inning with a single to center field, and Jillian Busfield hit her seventh home run of the season to pull Saint Mary's within 3-2 after an inning-and-a-half of play.

Calvin responded in the bottom half of the second inning with two runs on three hits and a walk. The Knights added three insurance runs in the bottom of the sixth while the Belles were unable to get a runner past first base over the final five innings of the game.

Callie Selner shouldered the loss after allowing eight runs on 13 hits with two walks and four strikeouts.

Game two saw the Knights claim the early lead again as Calvin had a solo home run in the second inning and a run on a double, a sacrifice bunt, and another double in the top of the fifth for a 2-0 advantage.

The Belles pushed three runs across in the bottom of the fifth to turn a 2-0 deficit into the 3-2 winning margin. Sarah Callis reached on an error by the second baseman and Ashley Watkins hit a single to right field to get the offense going for the Belles in the fifth. After a ground out moved Callis and Watkins into scoring position. Victoria Connelly then hit a single to drive in Callis from third. Emily Sherwood then delivered what proved to be the decisive blow as the senior drove in Watkins and Connelly with a single up the middle.

Down to their final at bats, Calvin had a two-out single followed by a double down the left field line to put the tying run on third and the go-ahead run on second. Sarah Burke and the Saint Mary's defense shut down the comeback effort with a line drive out to Victoria Connelly in center field to end the game.

Connelly went 1-for-2 with a run batted in, a run scored, and a sacrifice. Sherwood, Watkins, Kayla Chapman, and Jillian Busfield all added hits for the Belles in the victory.

Sarah Burke took the win in the circle after giving up two earned runs on eight hits with one walk and six strikeouts.

The Belles (13-11, 3-1 MIAA) return home to host Kalamazoo on Thursday, April 18 for a conference doubleheader beginning at 3:30 p.m.