The Marauders bats carries them past Mansfield

Millersville bats were alive as they swept Mansfield in a short two game series. Photo courtesy of MU Athletics.

Brandon Robinson
Staff Writer

On Saturday afternoon March 23 at Seaber Stadium, the Millersville Marauders hosted a double-header softball game against the Mountaineers of Mansfield University. The Marauders came into play with a record one-win shy of being .500 on the season at 11-12, while the Mountaineers came in two wins over .500 with a record of just 6-4.

The Marauders are coming off two losses at the hands of Pitt-Johnstown Wednesday during their double-header and looking to get back on the winning side of things for manager Jen Probst. To do so, the Marauders knew that a win in game one of this double-header would carry the momentum into the second game as well. The Mountaineers also came into Millersville coming off of two losses in their double-header to Goldey-Beacom College.

This is the first time these two teams have faced each other all year and the first time since the 2017 season. Both teams were eager to get runs on the board early and get back into the swing of things that they are used to.

Game one was all Millersville, as the Marauders ended the game early due to the mercy-rule of being up eight runs after five innings of play. Starting pitcher Emma Bevard held her own early only giving up one earned run in three and a third innings pitched but was slated with the no decision. Bevard let up only two walks and managed to strikeout four batters on the day. The offense for Millersville was the story early, as they held a two-run lead until the top of the fourth inning where Mansfield started getting runners on base and scoring. The Mountaineers would eventually tie the game on two unearned runs, but the Marauders’ responded with one of their biggest innings of the day.

Scoring six straight runs in the bottom of the fourth inning would push the lead for Millersville to 9-3. Faith Willenbrock and Hunter Little both contributed mightily as they both finished with three RBI’s and Little even went yard to left-center field to increase the lead even more for Millersville. Pitcher Catherine Johnson would fill in for Bevard after her exit in the 4th inning and finished with the win along with two strikeouts including a walk. Johnson now moves to 6-4 on the year as the Marauders take game one with ease over Mansfield.

Game two ended differently than game one, as this game was more of a comeback effort put forth by the Marauders. The final score was 8-6 and showed the true dominance of the team’s ability to put up runs in a hurry.

Maddie Guinane started for the Marauders as she went five full innings with four earned runs, two strikeouts, and a walk. Guinane had a one run advantage for most of the game over the Mountaineers until Leah McGovern tied the game at one in the fourth inning. Mansfield would go on to take a 3-1 lead in the inning until the bottom of the fifth inning.

The Marauders would explode for their most runs in an inning on the day with seven and regain the lead. Hunter Little again homered, this time down the left field line off the foul pole and brought he Marauders within one run. Brianna Battavio’s base’s clearing double, would extend the lead even more and put the Marauders ahead by two runs. They were not done yet, however, as infielders Rebecca Blatt and Maggie Murphy homered as well extending the lead to five runs at 8-3.

Mansfield would put in an effort in the later innings to come back by scoring three runs, but to no avail as the Marauders swept the double-header and move to 13-12 on the season. Mansfield drops to 6-6 on the season and will face Bloomsburg University Friday, March 29 in another double-header. The Marauders on the other hand, have the University of Lock Haven tomorrow, followed by Shepherd University Wednesday to keep the winning streak alive.