Belles Sweep Yellow Jackets
NOTRE DAME, Ind. - The Saint Mary's softball team earned a sweep with 5-1 and 10-2 (5 innings) wins over Defiance at home on Thursday afternoon.
In the opener, the Belles broke the scoreless tie with a run in the bottom of the second and another in the bottom of the third. Callie Selner led off the second with a single to the right-center fence. The junior moved to second on a sacrifice bunt by Jillian Busfield and scored easily on a double to left field by Sarah Callis. In the third, Ashley Watkins led off with a single to right-center field, moved up on an error on a sacrifice bunt attempt by Victoria Connelly and a sacrifice bunt by Emily Sherwood, and scored on a wild pitch.
Defiance cut the lead in half in the top of the sixth with a pair of hits, a walk, and a bases loaded fielder's choice. Saint Mary's responded right away with three runs of their own in the bottom half of the inning to put the game away.
Callie Selner helped her own cause with a 2-for-2 effort at the dish with an intentional walk and a run scored. Sarah Callis went 2-for-3 with an RBI double while also scoring a run.
Selner earned her 30th career win in the circle in game one as she allowed just one run on six hits with two walks and seven strikeouts.
The Belles jumped on the scoreboard early and never looked back with a five-run outburst in the first in game two. All nine hitters in the Saint Mary's lineup made it up to bat in the bottom of the first as the Belles made the most of an error and five hits to gain the early lead.
Saint Mary's pushed two unearned runs across in the third inning to go up 7-0 as Sarah Burke was perfect in the circle through three complete innings. The Yellow Jackets, however, broke through with two runs on three hits in the top of the fourth to put any thoughts of a perfect game to bed.
Much like the opener, the Belles responded immediately and in a big way in the bottom of the fourth inning. After Emily Sherwood and Callie Selner each singled, Jillian Busfield put the exclamation point on the day with a three-run home run to straight away center field to put the mercy rule in effect. Burke and the Belles defense set the Yellow Jackets down in order in the top of the fifth to secure the doubleheader sweep.
Ashley Watkins was 2-for-2 with a pair of singles and two runs batted in. Selner continued her hot day at the plate with a 2-for-3 effort, an RBI, and three runs scored. Kayla Chapman and Emily Sherwood both went 2-for-3 while scoring two runs each.
Sarah Burke had a strong outing in the circle with the five-inning victory after allowing two runs on three hits with three strikeouts and no walks.
The Belles (8-6) will travel to Anderson for another non-conference doubleheader on Thursday, April 4 beginning at 3:30 p.m.