Softball splits doubleheader against DePauw to end homestand

Sahil Patel | Student Life

Freshman Kenzie James squares up to bunt in the seventh inning of the Washington University softball team’s 4-1 loss to DePauw University Wednesday evening. James had two hits in the game, including a single in the bottom of the seventh that extended the game.

Concluding a six-game homestand, the Washington University softball team split a doubleheader against DePauw University on Wednesday.

After falling 4-1 in the first game and winning the second 5-1, the Bears’ season record is 14-7, and the team has lost seven of its last 13 since starting 8-0.

In the first game, DePauw jumped out to a 2-0 lead after three innings against Bears’ starting pitcher Kelsey Neal (4-2). The Bears threatened in the bottom of the fourth inning when senior outfielder Maggie Ingell hit a leadoff double. After a sacrifice bunt advanced Ingell to third, graduate catcher Stacy Berg doubled to left-center field to drive in the Bears’ only run of the game. Neal then singled to left to put runners on first and third base with one out, but a strikeout and groundout ended the inning with the Bears still trailing 2-1.

DePauw extended its lead to 4-1 after hitting back-to-back home runs in the fifth inning, which ended Neal’s day on the mound. Sophomore pitcher Amanda Kalupa pitched 2.2 shutout innings in relief, but it wasn’t enough as the Bears fell 4-1.

Neal and freshman designated hitter Kenzie James both had two hits in the game—overall, the Red and Green recorded eight hits but left seven runners on base in the defeat.

In the second game of the doubleheader, the Bears’ offense woke up just enough from its slumber to support sophomore pitcher Annie Pitkin (7-5).

Wash. U. broke a scoreless tie in the third inning when junior infielder Paige Biles drove in Ingell with a triple. In the fourth inning, Neal hit her fourth home run of the season to double the lead to 2-0.

DePauw pulled back within one in the fifth inning on an unearned run. Berg made a throwing error that scored a runner from third base, but Pitkin limited the damage by striking out the following batter to end the inning.

The Bears roared back in the sixth inning with three runs to take a commanding 5-1 lead. Freshman outfielder Hannah Mehrle recorded an RBI on a fielder’s choice, freshman Halle Steinberg scored on a throwing error and Berg drove in the final run with a double. By the time the inning ended, the Bears had connected on three hits and benefited from one DePauw error. The Bears cruised to a 5-1 victory after Brooke Hofer obtained her first save of the season by

providing two scoreless innings in relief.

Overall, the Bears finished their homestand with a 2-4 record. The Bears struggled offensively during the stretch by scoring only eight runs in the first five games, but the Red and Green finished with a relative offensive outburst with five runs in their victory Wednesday.