Benjamin's Bat, Jones' Arm Lift Softball to Extra-Inning Win

Tuesday, April 2, 2013 - page 2

Chelsea Benjamin
Benjamin's round-tripper gave the Mules their first win in a game of longer than nine innings since 2004. They are 4-0 in extra-inning games this year, tying the school record for extra-inning wins in a season.
After defeating Haverford in a 17-13 slugfest in the second game of last year’s doubleheader, the Muhlenberg softball team won the opener of this year’s twinbill in a very different type of game.

No runs crossed the plate for the first nine innings before junior Chelsea Benjamin belted a two-run home run in the top of the 10th for a 2-0 win. The nightcap also featured stingy pitching and the longball, as the Fords hit two two-run homers to gain the split with a 5-1 victory.

The split, against a team that was just outside the top 25 in last week’s national Division III poll, left the Mules with a 6-2 record at the halfway point of their Centennial Conference season. With a 15-5 overall mark, Muhlenberg has its best record after 20 games since 1991.

Sophomore Kelsey Jones went the distance in the opener, tying the school record for most innings pitched in a shutout to improve to 9-1. She struck out nine, including some in key situations. Haverford (14-6, 4-2) got runners to third with two outs in the third and sixth before Jones ended the threats with strikeouts.

In the bottom of the ninth, the Fords had the potential winning run on second with nobody out, but Jones struck out the side.

Muhlenberg likewise could not score despite advancing runners to third in the fourth and ninth. The 10th inning was played under international tiebreaker rules, and with two outs and junior Colleen O’Donnell on third, Benjamin cleared the fence in left for her second home run of the season. It was the first game-winning home run after the ninth inning in program history.

Jones finished off the game by retiring the Fords 1-2-3 in the bottom of the 10th.

In the nightcap, the Mules were kept off the board until O’Donnell’s two-out RBI single in the sixth.
Click here for line scores.
Click for complete stats: Game 1 | Game 2