Playing in its second three-game series of the week, Ball State Softball (19-25, 8-12 MAC) won one of three games against Buffalo (17-20, 8-11 MAC).
The Cardinals lost both games of their doubleheader April 23, 11-8 in game one and 9-4 in game two. In game three April 24, Ball State bounced back and shut out the Bulls 4-0. Here are three takeaways from Ball State's weekend in Buffalo, NY.
High scoring opener
In game one, both the Cardinals and Bulls started fast. After Buffalo struck first in the first inning, sophomore third baseman Emma Richards knotted the game up with a solo home run in the top of the second.
Right fielder Kaitlyn Mathews then gave the Cardinals the lead with a two-run shot in the top of the second. Buffalo tied the game at three with two RBI singles in the bottom of the second.
Richards started off the third with an RBI single to put Ball State back up. Then, graduate student catcher Delaine Johnson hit a three-run home run to extend the Cardinals lead to 7-3.
The Bulls then scored six runs in the bottom of the third and two runs in the bottom of the fourth to take the lead. Mathews drove in a late run in the sixth, but Buffalo held on to win 11-8.
Late inning bull-rush
The second game started even faster than the first.
In the top of the first inning, Ball State scored three runs thanks to RBI singles from Johnson, sophomore first baseman Samantha-Jo Mata and sophomore center fielder Remington Ross. In the bottom of the first, Buffalo one-upped Ball State by scoring four runs. In the top of the fourth, Richards evened the score with a solo home run, but the Bulls scored two runs in the fifth and three in the sixth to win 9-4.
In game three, Ball State jumped out to an early lead after Mathews was walked with the bases loaded, sending senior left fielder Faith Hensley home to start the first inning. Senior shortstop Amaia Daniel increased the lead to three later in the inning.
Hensley then capped the scoring off in the fourth with a solo home run. Ball State was able to hold the Bulls scoreless en route to a 4-0 win. Junior pitcher Deborah Jones got her second shutout and sixth win of the season.
Ball State hosts Bowling Green (25-14, 11-8 MAC) on April 29 and 30, with first pitch scheduled for 3 p.m. on the 29th.