SOFTBALL: Hilltoppers avoid sweep, win one of two

Amber North

The Western softball team avoided a sweep in its doubleheader against Eastern Kentucky (18-14) on Tuesday, overcoming a shutout loss in the first game and taking home a win in the second.

In the first four innings of Game One, it was a pitching duel between freshman Adrienne Lathrop (10-7) and Eastern’s Jonelle Csora (11-6). Lathrop held the Colonels to zero hits and zero runs.

The no-hitter and shutout was broken in the bottom of the fifth when Eastern’s third baseman Ashley Totten had a base hit and later scored off a two-run single from right fielder Jennifer Christiansen.

Eastern continued their hitting frenzy as they had two more hits and earned two more runs from Lathrop before she was replaced by freshman Natasha Sevco.

“She ran into some mechanical problems (in her pitching motions) and she wasn’t able to overcome those,” head coach Leslie Phelan said.

And the Hilltoppers weren’t able to overcome Csora’s dominance.

The senior took over the game as she struck out 10 of the first 13 batters, leading to the Colonels’ 4-0 victory.

The only Western players to pick up hits in the game were senior Kristalyn Smith and juniors Allison Silver and Riley Garcia.

“She threw a good game – sometimes you just get beat when somebody is better than you,” Phelan said. “I don’t think we did much wrong, it’s just that we didn’t hit because she pitched well.”

In the second game, the Hilltoppers woke up from their hitting slump, rebounding from an early 2-0 deficit in the first inning.

Silver evened her record to 11-11 while allowing four hits and two unearned runs and walking none.

The top of the fifth was a rejuvenating inning for Western as they scored four runs off three hits and three errors by Eastern’s defense. Sophomore Dana Rey earned her fifth home run of the season.

“We wanted to come back and not allow them to take two games from us,” Rey said. “Everybody contributed, so that was a plus.”

The Hilltoppers will return to conference play as they take on New Mexico State at home. The first doubleheader will begin at 5 p.m. tomorrow and the second doubleheader will start at 2 p.m. Saturday.

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