Two first-inning runs proved to be the difference on Sunday afternoon, as the Valparaiso University softball team fell by a 2-0 final in its MVC series finale at Indiana State.
How It Happened
- Valpo threatened immediately in the top of the first, as senior Taylor Lawson (Tucson, Ariz./Sahuaro) led off the game with an infield single and junior Jaymee Lawton (Goodyear, Ariz./Desert Edge [Utah Valley]) followed with a walk.
- A pair of stolen bases had the runners on second and third with one out, but Indiana State turned a double play to get out of the inning as Lawson attempted to score on a fly ball into shallow right field.
- Indiana State would score the only runs of the game in the bottom of the first, as Brooke Mann recorded an RBI single to right-center and Amanda Guercio picked up an infield single off the end of her bat to score the second run.
- The Crusaders had a pair of scoring chances in the next two innings as well. A leadoff walk and a two-out free pass put two runners on in the second, but a strikeout ended that threat. Then, in the third, with Lawton on first, junior Carly Trepanier (Manteno, Ill./Manteno) drilled a double to the wall in right-center, but a pair of perfect relay throws caught Lawton trying to come around to score.
- Heading into its final turn at bat still down 2-0, a trio of pinch-hitters all reached to give Valpo one final chance. Sophomore Hannah Dybalski (Lebanon, Ind./Lebanon) was hit by a pitch to lead off the inning and sophomore Gabby Magnifico (Elmhurst, Ill./York) watched all four pitches she saw go by for balls to draw a walk. Senior Jasmine Ramirez (Litchfield Park, Ariz./Millennium) followed with a chopper on the infield which she beat out for a single to load the bases.
- The Sycamores came home for the force on a ground ball for the first out, and a pop-up had the Crusaders down to their final out. Trepanier roped an 0-1 pitch right back up the middle, but the shot found the glove of Indiana State pitcher Della Gher for a lineout.
Inside the Game
- Lawson tallied two hits as she returned to the leadoff spot for the first time since the opening day of the season.
- Lawton was slotted in the second spot in the order for just the second time in her Crusader career, while Trepanier hit in the third position for the first time in her three years at Valpo.
- Senior Jenna Stauffenberg (Kankakee, Ill./Bishop McNamara) joined Lawson in reaching base twice on Sunday, as she drew a pair of walks.
- Valpo went 1-for-9 on Sunday with runners in scoring position, ending the weekend 1-for-17 in such situations.
- Senior Kenzie Grossmann (Perry, Mo./Mark Twain [Morehead State]) escaped a jam with runners on second and third with one out in the second and settled in, eventually going five innings and allowing just the two runs, but fell to 8-4 on the year. Sophomore Emily Richardson (Oak Park, Ill./River Forest) came out of the bullpen to pitch a scoreless inning as well.
Valpo (12-11, 0-3 MVC) is scheduled to step out of conference play for a single game on Tuesday afternoon at IUPUI. First pitch is slated for 2:30 p.m. CT.