By: Sean Neidig, sports information graduate assistant
CLERMONT, Fla. – On Capital University Softball's second day in Florida, the Crusaders earned their first win of the season before falling in the second. Capital shut out Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology 6-0 and then fell to Neumann University 12-4.
GAME 1 – Rose-Hulman 0, Capital 6
The Crusaders started the game as well as they possibly could have as Alyx Slusher led off the game with a home run to center field. After a single and a hit by pitch, Morgan Fadel scored on an error. Alysa Durbin scored Capital's third run in the second inning.
In the fifth inning, Cory Mangen led off the inning with a single and then advanced to third on a wild pitch and a passed ball. Kristen Mellot then grounded out to short but allowed Mangen to come home. Erica Ogden doubled to center next and Chevonne Hayslett walked. Both runners moved up on another wild pitch and freshman Lauren Kachure doubled both of them home with a shot to left.
In her second start of the young season, pitcher Brianna Reardon threw a complete game and allowed only five hits. She walked one and struck out five.
Slusher finished the game 2-for-3 with a walk, a run and an RBI. Kachure batted in the two runs and went 1-for-3 at the dish. Capital finished with seven hits as a team.
GAME 2 – Capital 4, Neumann 12 (5)
In the second game of the day, neither team got on the board in the first inning but Capital drew first blood in the second. Ogden started the inning with a double to right center and Hayslett singled through the left side of the infield to move Ogden to third. Kachure, Capital's next batter then ripped a single past third base to bring Ogden home.
Neumann tied the game in the bottom of the frame though with a homer.
The Crusaders reclaimed the lead in the third though as Fadel led off the inning with a single and then took second on a wild pitch. Mangen popped out to left but moved Fadel ahead to third and then Fadel scored on an error by Neumann's catcher.
Mellotsingled in Capital's next plate appearance and was ran for by Barrett Littman. After a groundout, Hayslett shot a double down the line in left field allowing Littman to score and the Crusaders found themselves up 3-1.
Neumann found their bats in the bottom of the frame though and plated seven runs to surge ahead 8-3. Capital loaded the bases with two outs in the top of the fourth inning and Mellot singled home a run to cut the deficit to four runs but Capital could not capitalize further and four Neumann runs in the fifth ended the game.
Fadel finished the game 3-for-3 and Mellot went 2-for-3 with a run batted in. Hayslett recorded hits in both of her at-bats with an RBI as well. Capital recorded 11 hits as a team.
The Crusaders will enjoy an off day on Wednesday before playing another doubleheader on Thursday, Feb. 28. Capital will play Saint Mary's University of Minnesota at 9:30 a.m. to start the day and will take on the Milwaukee School of Engineering at 11:45 later that morning.