NEW CONCORD, Ohio – The Capital University softball team picked up a pair of conference wins at Muskingum University on Tuesday afternoon. The day featured a game in which the Crusaders fought their way back after giving up seven runs to the Muskies in a single inning. Followed by a performance where Capital got an early advantage and stood strong on the defensive side to protect its lead.
Game 1 vs. Muskingum, W 10-9
Leadoff hitter Kelsey Swain (Pickerington, Ohio) grabbed momentum early for the Crusaders (14-7, 5-1 OAC) with a hit to right field that allowed her to reach third base. Brooklyn Staten (Grove City, Ohio) followed with a single through the right side to record the game's first RBI.
After senior catcher Maura Rose (Williamsport, Pa.) reached first base on a fielder's choice, she was crossed home plate due to a Marrisa Koss (Ostrander, Ohio) double to right-center field.
On top 4-1, Capital surrendered its lead in the bottom of the fourth inning, allowing Muskingum (9-13, 1-5) to score seven runs. The run began with Melissa Maiorano finding a gap in center field to allow Amber Bova to score Muskingum's first run since the opening inning. After Hanna Reese drew a walk, she and Bova stole second and third base to move within striking distance. A second consecutive walk was drawn to load the bases.
Senior catcher Jaclynn Hess gave the Muskies a lead with shot to left field to bring in three runs.
Two more runs were scored before Rose recovered a wild pitch and tagged Bova at home plate to send Muskingum back to its dugout.
Swain produced what would prove to be the game-winning RBIs with a double to left center-field. The hit scored Bailey Walter (Ashland, Ohio) and Julia Jennings (Dover, Ohio) from first and second. The play gave the Crusaders a 10-9 lead that they protected for their fourth conference win of the season.
Amber Martinelli (Allison Park, Pa.) received the win at pitcher, improving her record to 3-0.
Game 2 vs Muskingum, W 7-3
Capital wasted no time in putting a pair of runs on the board as the team's leading home run hitter, LeAnna Cotton (Okeechobee, Fla.) knocked a ball over the leftfield fence.
Therese Becker (South Euclid, Ohio) got the second inning started with a double to right-center field. Alyssa Patznick (Newark, Ohio) advanced Becker to third with a base hit before Brooke Hokes (Powell, Ohio) entered the game as a pinch runner.
Following an at bat in which Jennings drew a walk, outfielder Ashley Knowles (Canton, Ohio) singled through the right side to collect two RBIs as Becker and Hokes crossed home plate.
Capital held a 6-3 lead after the first two innings and would clamp down on the defensive side to hold the Muskies scoreless the rest of the way.
The Crusaders finished with 11 hits while holding Muskingum's batting lineup to just seven. Cotton highlighted Capital's batting effort, going 2-for-3 at the plate resulting in 2 RBIS
The Crusaders are set to face Wilmington (5-19, 1-5 OAC) in a doubleheader on Friday, April 3 as they try to tighten their grasp on the top spot in the Ohio Athletic Conference standings. The first pitch will be thrown at 1 p.m.