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MU offense stymied by KU pitching

Millersville softball struggles Monday at Kutztown as offense can't get it going. Photo courtesy of MU Athletics.

Jared Kish
Sports Editor

Millersville’s softball team traveled about an hour north to play Kutztown on Monday for two games. The Marauders have not played great in the conference as they are 3-7 in the PSAC East. Overall, Millersville is 20-25 and hoped to keep their PSAC tournament contention alive.

In game one of the doubleheader, Millersville quickly jumped out to a 2-0 lead. Thanks to Rebecca Blatt, the Marauders were able to find the scoreboard first with a two-run hit in the second.  

Unfortunately for the Marauders, from here out in game one it would all be Kutztown. The Golden Bears quickly responded with a run of their own in the bottom of the second when Taylor Knappenberger smacked an RBI double.  

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Both offenses were quiet in the third but in the bottom half of the fourth, Kutztown tied the score at two. Millersville pitcher Catherine Johnson threw a wild pitch leading to a Golden Bears run.

Kutztown’s offense recorded three more runs in the bottom half of the fifth when Dani Nordyk and Hannah Auvil hit back to back doubles. As Kutztown continued to build their lead the Marauder pitching severely struggled.

The Golden Bears offense was not done in the fifth, in the sixth they tacked on three more runs. Kutztown had a commanding lead of 8-2 at the end of six as the Marauders had one more plate appearance to make a comeback.   

The Marauder offense couldn’t get anything going resulting in an 8-2 loss over Kutztown in game one. Millersville pitching did not benefit them as Catherine Johnson went 4 1/3 innings giving up five runs on eight hits. Emma Bevard finished off the game with 1 2/3 innings allowing the final three runs.

If the Marauders wanted to win game two of the doubleheader their pitching was going to have to be better and their offense needed to wake up.

However, the narrative of the game was Kutztown’s starting pitcher Bridget Bailey. Feeding off the struggling Millersville offense from game one, she blanked the Marauders in game two. Needing only 91 pitches through seven innings, Bailey struck out 13 batters and only gave up two hits resulting in a 4-0 shutout securing the win for Kutztown.

The Marauder offense just had no answer for Bailey as she improved to an outstanding 14-5 on the year. This was also her third shutout of the year.

Millersville starter Brianna White gave up Kutztown’s four runs on eight hits in six innings pitched. Even though White did not pitch all that bad, the offense did not provide any support to a struggling Millersville pitching staff.

The trip to Kutztown was a disappointing one for the Marauders on Monday as they clearly did not give the best performance. These two losses bumped the overall Millersville record to 20-27, 3-9 in PSAC play and eliminated them from the PSAC tournament.   

Despite the not so great performance on Monday, the Marauders will have a couple of days to regroup and find their stride. On Friday, April 26 Millersville will travel to West Chester for another division doubleheader. This will be the Marauders final road trip of the season.