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Softball splits double-header with Missouri Science & Technology

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Pitcher Julian Austin thows to home plate against Missouri University of Science and Technology. Austin had a rough 4th inning, giving up 4 runs. Charles Bowles/ Sports Editor

The Billiken women’s softball team split a doubleheader on Sunday against Missouri University of Science and Technology.

The Miners from Rolla, MO took the first game in a low-scoring affair. Pitching for the Billikens was Julian Austin; after three scoreless innings, she gave up four runs in the top of the fourth. The knockout blow was a two-run home run from Miners designated hitter Becca Strope.

SLU’s players did not put up much of a fight on offense. They were held to no runs on just five base hits. The closest they came to scoring was in the bottom of the second inning, when they left runners stranded at second and third base.

Kelsey Biggs lead off with a hit to left field. After the left fielder took time getting to the ball, Biggs took second. The next batter, Alyson Brand, reached base with a single, leaving runners at the corners with no one out. With Brianna Lore at the plate, Brand stole second, but Lore lined out to the shortstop.

While the next batter, Olivia Roback, was at the plate, Biggs was caught stealing home in what appeared to be a miscommunication between the batter, runner and coach. Roback made an out and was followed by Katie Kroeger. Kroeger popped out to the pitcher, ending what came to be the Billikens’ best scoring opportunity.

After the second inning the Billikens never got a runner as far as second base. The Miners also never mounted any offensive threat after the fourth, and the game passed quickly with a final score of 4-0.

In the second game the roles were reversed dramatically. After retiring the Miners in the top of the first, the Billikens got started right away scoring runs. The first batter, Jessica Buschjost, got on base with a single. The very next batter, Lindsay Friedman, drove her in with a double.

Friedman was the offensive star of the game as she also drove in runs in the second inning. With two runners on and two outs, Friedman drove a pitch from Miners pitcher, Becca Strope, deep over the centerfield wall. The homerun put the Billikens up 3-0 and knocked Stope (the offensive hero from the first game) from the game in favor of Miners reliever Amber Duncan.

In total, Friedman went 4-4, collecting three singles and two RBIs. The Billikens scored two insurance runs in the fifth inning, making the final score 6-0.

SLU will pick up action with another double-header at home this Saturday. The first game against Southeast Missouri State University starts at noon. The second game is at 4 p.m. against Missouri State.

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