AU Softball Sweeps No. 24 Indiana Southeast
WILMORE, Ky. – Asbury softball swept No. 24 Indiana Southeast on Tuesday, 4-1 and 5-3, moving the Eagles to a tie for third in the KIAC in the process. The win snapped the Grenaiders 10-game winning streak. The Eagles were swept by IUS in New Albany.
Maris Harreld pitched all 14 innings for the Eagles, improving to 9-10 on the season by allowing just four runs, 11 hits and one walk while striking out seven.
Asbury (15-23, 12-12 KIAC) fell behind in game one as Whitney Estes hit a solo home run in the third for the Grenadiers. In the bottom of the inning the Eagles answered as Julie Jarboe hit a two-run homer to left to give the Eagles a 2-1 lead, a lead that was more than enough for Harreld.
The Grenadiers (31-7, 21-3 KIAC) did not have another hit past the third inning in game one. Harreld retired the final 13 batters she faced. Jarboe brought in two more runs for the Eagles in the fourth with a single to right. Kelsey Preece and Madi Adair both scored on the hit from Jarboe. Preece walked with one out and Adair singled with two outs. After a walk to Harreld, Jarboe delivered the insurance runs. Jarboe finished with two hits and four RBI in the game. AnnaBeth Hill also had a pair of hits in the game.
In game two the Eagles were outhit 7-5 but took advantage of four Grenadier errors and six walks. Asbury jumped on the board first, scoring two runs in the first with just a single hit. Nisha Brown walked the bases loaded and with two outs, Kateland Hunter singled through the left side to score Jarboe. Brittany Hogg worked a walk to score the second run before Brown was able to strand the bases loaded.
IUS answered in the top of the second as Jade Detzer doubled in two runs. Ashley Benson hit a one-out double to break a string of 17 consecutive batters retired by Harreld going back to game one. Megan Sutherland also walked in front of Detzer’s double. The Grenadiers took a 3-2 lead in the fourth as Bethany Sullivan delivered a two-out single to score Brookleyn Visker.
The Eagles were up to the challenge in the bottom of the fourth, scoring three times to take a 5-3 lead. After retiring the first batter Brown walked Ashleigh West and was replaced in the circle by Jordan Batliner. Batliner retired the first batter she faced before Harreld reached on a dropped fly ball in right field. Jarboe followed with a double down the left field line that scored West and would have scored Harreld had it not rolled past the temporary fence and being ruled dead. Hill followed with a walk and Amber Taylor reached on a fielding error at first that allowed both Harreld and Jarboe to score.
Harreld retired nine of the final 11 batters she faced, only allowing a single in the sixth. A runner also reached on an error in the sixth but Harreld got a fly out to end the frame. A 1-2-3 seventh gave the Eagles the sweep and evened the season series with IUS at 2-2. IUS beat the Eagles 20-3 and 4-1 in New Albany back on April 9.
The wins push the Eagles into a virtual tie with Berea for third in the KIAC. Berea swept Midway on Tuesday meaning the Mountaineers are 13-13 in league play while the Eagles are 12-12. Asbury is scheduled to visit Berea on Friday at 5:30 pm. Berea swept the Eagles in Wilmore earlier this season. Asbury needs two wins at Berea to break the tie in their favor, a split gives Berea in the edge with winning the head-to-head tiebreaker. Asbury’s rained out doubleheader with Brescia is not likely to be made up before next week’s tournament, meaning the Berea doubleheader will likely dictate the final seeding.