Ranking, Sweep, Record All in a Day's Work for Softball

Thursday, April 17, 2014
 

Women’s tennis

Hours after receiving a regional ranking from the NCAA, the Muhlenberg softball team played like one of the top teams in the region, sweeping a twinight doubleheader at Dickinson to strengthen its hold on first place in the Centennial Conference.

Erica Wenzel
Wenzel's RBI single was the 150th hit of her career. She scored two runs and drove in two in the doubleheader.
The 10-1 win in the first game was the 20th of the season for the Mules, giving them 20 wins for the 11th time in program history and the third time in the last four years. By completing the sweep with a 6-3 victory in the nightcap, Muhlenberg set a College all-sports record for wins in back-to-back seasons (52).

With two CC doubleheaders to play, the Mules (21-7, 10-2) lead Washington (10-4), McDaniel (9-3), Haverford (7-3) and Franklin & Marshall (8-4) in a five-team race for the four playoff spots.

Three of those teams were clustered together in the first NCAA East Region rankings of the 2014 season. The Mules came in seventh, one behind Washington and one ahead of Haverford in the first of three weekly polls that will ultimately determine selection to and seeding in the NCAA Tournament.

Muhlenberg had only two hits through the first four innings of the opening game of the Dickinson doubleheader but still held a 4-1 lead. The Mules scored three runs without the benefit of a hit (four walks, a sacrifice fly and an error) in the second and added a run on an RBI single by junior Jaimie Klotz in the third.

Nicole Iannarone
Iannarone doubled in each game of the doubleheader, raising her season average to .400.
Muhlenberg came out swinging in the fifth, sending 12 batters to the plate and blowing the game open with a six-run frame. Following RBI singles by seniors Erica Wenzel and Kelly Kline, sophomore Taylor Trifiolis drove in two more runs with her team-leading 10th double of the season.

Junior Kelsey Jones allowed five hits over five innings to earn her 11th win of the season.

The second game was closer: The Mules scored in each of the first three innings of the nightcap, but the Red Devils (8-20, 4-10) matched them through five. The third-inning run came on a solo home run by Kline; with 28 home runs and 147 RBI, she continues to move closer to the CC records of 31 and 155.

The winning three-run rally came in the top of the sixth after junior Alyssa Schell threw out the potential go-ahead run at the plate from left field in the bottom of the fifth. Sophomore Amie DeFeo led off with a pinch-hit single and was sacrificed to second. After a walk, sophomore Nicole Iannarone brought in the go-ahead run with a double.

Two more runs scored when Schell’s fly ball to left was dropped.

Junior Heather Porrini pitched in and out of trouble for the entire game, leaving the bases loaded twice, but finished off her ninth win of the season in style, retiring the side 1-2-3 in the bottom of the seventh.
Click here for line scores.
Click for complete stats: Game 1 | Game 2