KISSIMMEE, Fla. -- The Heidelberg University softball team finished its spring trip with a split. The Berg defeated PSU-New Kensington, 12-4, in six innings before falling to Simmons, 8-6, in the nightcap. HU returns to the Buckeye State with a 7-3 record.
GAME ONE: Heidelberg 12 PSU-New Kensington 4 (6 innings)
A two run home run by PSU-New Kensington in the top of the first pushed the visitors ahead 2-0. Heidelberg came back to score one in the bottom half, when a double off the bat of Abbey McKee scored Casey Moore.
In the second, sophomore Leah Bouillon led off the frame with a triple to right center field and scored on a single by Joanna Catalano. Senior second baseman Renee Lovett also tripled to score Catalano and give the Student Princes a 3-2 lead.
PSU-New Kensington scored an unearned run in the third to knot the game at 3. Starter Vanessa Macias gave way to Morgan Daniels with two runners on. Daniels struck out the first hitter, but walked the next to giving the Lions a 4-3 advantage.
McKee led off the bottom of the third with a walk, and advanced all the way to third on a sac bunt by Kaitlin Keys. Bouillon walked, and with two on and two out, Catalano reached on an error by the right fielder, allowing both runners to score. The unearned runs helped Heidelberg regain the lead, 5-4.
The Student Princes broke the game open in the fourth, plating three runs to take an 8-4 lead. Freshman Rachel Ensman tripled, and was followed up by a two-run home run by Casey Moore, the sophomore's third blast of the season. McKee followed Moore with a single, and was brought home when Haylee Patel tripled.
After HU scored an unearned run in the fifth, sophomore Grace Turner pinch hit with the bases loaded in the sixth. Singles by Kennedy Conney and Bethany Redman, along with a walk to Sydney Calabro gave Turner the chance with the bags juiced. Turner delivered a walkoff 3 RBI triple -- her first career RBIs.
Despite Daniels's command struggles in the third, the junior would toss 3.2 innings of no-hit ball. Daniels struck out four and walked two, earning her first win of the 2018 campaign.
Heidelberg crushed five triples in the game off the bat of five different hitters -- Lovett, Turner, Ensman, Patel, and Bouillon.
GAME TWO: Simmons 8 Heidelberg 6
A 4-0 lead by the Student Princes would quickly vanish, as Simmons answered and never looked back.
HU started the game with a bang, plating four in the top of the first inning. Back-to-back singles by Casey Moore and McKee gave Heidelberg an early 2-0 advantage. Kaitlyn Moore and Patel would provide the other two RBIs in the inning.
The Sharks responded with a thunderous five-spot in the bottom half of the inning. The big blow came off the bat of Hailey Yabroudy, a two-run double that tied the game at four. A sac fly capped off the long inning for the Sharks.
Casey Moore doubled home Smith in the fifth for the Student Princes.
A single, double, and triple by Simmons extended the lead to 7-5. Following a HU pitching change, the Sharks welcomed Macias with a RBI single up the middle. Heidelberg's final run was an unearned run in the fifth.
Kaitlyn Moore suffered the loss in the circle for the Berg, the sophomore's first of the season.
Patel leaves the Sunshine State hitting a sparkling .500, starting all 10 games. The senior also has a team-high 13 RBI.
Heidelberg will travel to Bluffton University on Mar. 15 for two games against the Beavers. Game times are slated for 3 and 5 p.m.