WKU Softball grabs four wins in Hilltopper Classic


Marshall Canupp

WKU Softball junior outfielder Brylee Hage (11) makes contact during WKU’s matchup with the Arkansas Razorbacks on March 21, 2022 at the WKU Softball Complex.

Camden Bush

WKU Softball hosted the WKU Hilltopper Classic in Bowling Green Feb. 24-26. WKU won four of five games played over the weekend. 

The Hilltoppers claimed two victories over Central Michigan and two over Illinois State. Their one loss came to Jacksonville State.


Game 1

The Hilltoppers began the weekend Friday with a 2-1 win over Central Michigan University. 

Central Michigan began the scoring in the first inning as a run was pushed in by a bases loaded HBP. Following the run, both offenses went quiet until the fourth inning when WKU got on the board with a Sac Fly to make it 1-1. 

The Hilltoppers proceeded to take the lead 2-1 in the fifth with another Sac Fly. WKU held onto the lead and claimed a 2-1 victory to begin the weekend. 

Redshirt sophomore Kelsie Houchens began the game on the mound for WKU and put together an impressive start. Houchens pitched 6.1 innings and allowed only one run on one hit. 


Game 2

WKU defeated Illinois State 6-0 in their second game of the tournament Friday. 

Both teams came out of the gate a slowly as no one scored until the bottom of the third inning. 

Junior Taylor Sanders started the scoring with an RBI single in the bottom of the third. The Hilltoppers added another run in the inning with a Sac Fly to make it 2-0. 

In the sixth inning, WKU’s offense exploded for four more. Sanders was involved in the scoring again in the sixth with a Sac Fly.

The Hilltoppers managed to hold onto the 6-0 lead for the win. 

Sanders finished the game 1-1 with two RBIs and two walks.


Game 3

The Hilltoppers began Saturday with another win over Central Michigan in a 6-4 contest. 

The Chippewas came out of the gate hot Saturday as they tacked on runs in the first and second innings to take a 2-0 lead. 

Central Michigan then added another in the top of the fourth, but WKU responded with a run of their own on a homerun by fifth year Faith Hegh, to make it 3-1. 

WKU proceeded to tie it up 3-3 in the fifth inning. The Hilltoppers added runs on a walk with the bases loaded and a passed ball. 

The Chippewas then took the lead back in the top of the sixth with another run. The Hilltoppers followed with three runs in the bottom of the sixth to regain a 6-4 lead. 

Brylee Hage knocked in two in the inning with an RBI double and Hegh grabbed her second run of the day with a Sac Fly. 

WKU then kept the Chippewas off the board in the seventh and claimed a 6-4 victory. 


Game 4

The Hilltoppers lost their first game of the weekend Saturday evening to Jacksonville State 4-3.

The Hilltoppers got off to a quick start in the game as Hegh put them on the board in the first with an RBI double, making it 1-0. 

WKU added to the lead in the bottom of the fourth with an RBI single to make it 2-0. Jacksonville responded with a solo homer in the fifth, but the Hilltoppers matched it with a run of their own in the sixth.

JSU trailed 3-1 going into the final inning of the game, but rallied for three in the seventh to take home a 4-3 victory.

Senior Katie Gardner pitched the entire game for the Hilltoppers. Gardner allowed only one run through six before allowing three in the seventh. 


Game 5

The Hilltoppers closed the weekend with a 6-1 victory over Illinois State Sunday. 

WKU’s offense instantly exploded as the team tallied five runs in the first inning. The Hilltoppers scored on a passed ball, two RBI singles, an error and a steal of home.

Both offenses were quiet for the rest of the game. Both teams only tacked on one more as the Hilltoppers claimed a 6-1 win.

Houchens and Gardner both pitched in the win for the Hilltoppers. Houchens started the game and went 4.1 innings allowing one run. Gardner finished the final 2.2 innings without allowing a run. 


The Hilltoppers will be home again next weekend as they will be hosting visiting teams in the Hilltopper Spring Fling. WKU’s first game of the tournament will come against Akron Friday, March 3 at 3p.m. CST. 


Sports reporter Camden Bush can be reached at [email protected] .