SB: Berg's home opener ends in split

Photos courtesy of Kammie Memmer
Photos courtesy of Kammie Memmer

TIFFIN, Ohio -- The Heidelberg University softball opened up its home slate with a split against non-conference opponents, Defiance College, on Wednesday afternoon.

The Student Princes (4-6) took game one by a final score of 8-5, before falling to the Yellow Jackets (6-8) by a final tally of 6-4.

GAME ONE: HEIDELBERG - 8, DEFIANCE - 5

Heidelberg got on the board in the bottom of the first.  Kat Brady hit a six-foot single, moved to second on a sacrifice bunt and to third on a ground out.  Brady scored on a bloop single by Casey Moore that ticked off the glove of the second baseman.

Defiance responded with a pair off of 'Berg starter Stephanie Drapp in the second.  Aided by a fielding error, the Yellow Jackets plated a pair with a double and a single -- taking a brief lead.

The Student Princes answered in the home half of the second.  Singles by Hannah Ours and Leah Bouillon helped HU put runners in scoring position.  Brady followed with a single through the left side, sending Ours home with the equalizer.  

As Drapp kept Defiance off the board, Heidelberg broke the game open with a six-run fourth.  Bethany Redman singled up the middle and moved to second on a sacrifice bunt. After a walk, pinch runner Becca Radabaugh and Brady scored on a double to left center by Shelby Miller.  With two on, Moore hit a hard grounder inside the bag at third, scoring both runs. Moore scored on an Ours single to center. The final run scored when Catalano raced home on a wild pitch.  

The Yellow Jackets scratched a run across in the fifth, cutting the 'Berg lead to 8-3.  

Defiance continued their pressure in the top of the seventh, taking advantage of a error by the Berg defense. A triple, followed by a single up the middle plated two more runs. However, Stephanie Drapp worked a groundout and popout to end the game.

Drapp (4-1) picked up the win in her third complete game of the season. She allowed nine hits, five runs (three earned), while walking one and striking out two.

Rachel Wehrman (4-4) took the loss for Defiance lasting 3.2 innings. She allowed 11 hits, eight earned runs and three walks.

GAME TWO: DEFIANCE - 6, HEIDELBERG - 4

After a hitless two innings for both teams, Heidelberg finally found the breakthrough in the bottom of the first inning on a RBI single up the middle by Kat Brady. Her slap shot scored Leah Bouillon from second.

Unfortunately, untimely errors in the top half of the fourth resulted in Defiance establishing their control on the game. Two fielding errors by the Student Princes and three hits by the Yellow Jackets led to a 4-run inning. Only one of those four runs proved to be earned.

Both teams put up blanks in the fifth, before Defiance tacked on what would be the deciding runs in the top of the sixth.

McKenzie Baker hit a come back line drive to the pitcher that was knocked down, but could not be fielded with runners on second and third. The single allowed Jackie Hartman to come home. On the next play, Jordan Osborne connected on a single to left to plate Jen Nashalky for the Yellow Jackets.

Trailing by five heading to the bottom of the seventh, Heidelberg put their rally caps on and attempted a comeback. Casey Moore started the inning off with a triple and scored on a single by Joanna Catalano. Brooke Lewis then hit a single up the middle. On a throwing error by Defiance, Catalano scored and Lewis advanced to second. Hannah Ours then delivered an RBI single to plate Lewis. Unfortunately, the momentum would run out there as Kat Brady grounded out to short for the final out.

Morgan Daniels (0-5) picked up the loss in the circle for Heidelberg. The senior pitched 5.1 innings and conceded seven hits, five runs (two earned) and struck out one.

Taylor Biggs (2-4) earned the win for Defiance allowing seven hits for four runs (three earned).

INSIDE THE BOX SCORE:

Since its opening in 2015, the Student Princes are 7-3 in home opener doubleheaders at Frann's Field.  

Freshman Kat Brady improved her batting average this season to .514, good for third in the OAC. Brady was 4-for-7 from the dish in the doubleheader.

Freshman Stephanie Drapp picked up her fourth win of the season and sits in fifth among the conference leaders in that category.

UP NEXT:

Heidelberg will begin conference play with a road doubleheader at Ohio Northern University on Saturday. First pitch in Ada is scheduled for 1 p.m.