Softball bests Carnegie Mellon in a four-game series

and | Managing Sports Editor & Contributing Writer

Freshman Sydney Schneider sprints to home plate in Saturday, April 7th match-up against Carnegie Mellon. (Lydia Nicholson | Student Life.)

The Washington University softball team beat Carnegie Mellon University in a four-game University Athletic Association (UAA) conference series. With the series victory, the Bears improved to a 13-15 overall record for the season, with a 5-7 record in conference play.

“This is just what this team is capable of doing,” sophomore Maggie Baumstark said after the WashU softball team’s two-game sweep against Carnegie Mellon University Saturday, April 8. “[There are] lot of different reasons why [we haven’t been playing like this], but this is how we know we can play. So it feels good to just be ourselves again.” 

Losing to Carnegie in their first game of the series Friday, April 7, softball head coach Casey Cromwell was proud of her team’s rebound performance on Saturday and Sunday to win the series.

“I feel like [we’re] consistently doing the right things and we’ve had a lot of close ballgames,” Cromwell said after the Bears’ 2-0 sweep against the Tartans Saturday afternoon. “The UAA is a tough conference, and everything’s going to be gritty wins. [But the wins] speak volumes to our resilience, our persistent pursuit of excellence, and doing the right thing.”

On Friday evening, the Bears had a tough one-run loss to start off the series.  That night, Cromwell said her mentality was to “stay the course.” 

“We keep doing the right things,” she said. “It’s just losing by a run. It’s one small win somewhere. And there are a lot of small wins across the board and we’re sharing the wealth and those wins on the small end. So stay the course.”

During the first game on Saturday, the Bears struggled to get on the board early on, but pitcher Jordan Rossi kept the bats quiet after a run in the first inning. She threw seven innings, and the WashU bats finally responded in the sixth, when Paytin Irwin brought in two runs. WashU took a 2-1 lead that held until the end of the game.  

Going into the second game of the afternoon, the Bears charged into the late Saturday game with a strong offensive effort. They put themselves on the board first, scoring three runs in the bottom of the second inning. While Carnegie Mellon retaliated in the middle innings, putting up runs in the third and sixth to tie the game, Wong doubled to bring in Baumstark for the winning run. 

“It feels great [to beat Carnegie Mellon],” Gould said. “We finally took two games in a row — which I don’t believe we’ve done yet this season. So it’s a great feeling to leave the field knowing that we gave it our all.”

The Bears returned to the field on Sunday morning. The matchup was a pitcher’s duel for the first five and a half innings, with neither team able to push across a run. Jordan Rossi, who pitched fourteen innings in two days, kept the mound locked down once again for a zero ERA afternoon. The Bears’ offense found success in the sixth inning when sophomore Natalia Pilpil hit a single to bring Gould home. Junior Ashley Kennedy followed with a double to push the score to 2-0, and the Tartans were unable to answer the two-runs inning from WashU.  

The Bears’ win was a complete team effort, with their offense finally breaking through in the late innings and Rossi’s dominant pitching performance. The 3-1 record for the weekend against Carnegie Mellon put them in second in conference play.

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