MOUNT PLEASANT, Mich. - The Central Michigan softball team could not overcome two big innings by IPFW as it fell 6-4 and 7-5 in non-conference action Wednesday.
Molly Coldren became the Chippewas' (21-24) all-time RBI leader following a two-run home run in the bottom of the fourth in game one. She now has 127 career RBI placing her in front of CMU Hall of Fame member Elizabeth Barns who held the record of 125 set from 1996-99.
The Chippewas will return to Mid-American Conference play on Friday in a doubleheader against Ohio, beginning at 1 p.m., at Stadium.
Big Inning Propels Mastodons
Kara Dornbos retired the first two batters in the top of the fifth inning, but a Chippewa error opened the floodgates for the Mastodons (37-11). Following the misplay, a single to left field by Brittney Kacher drove home the Mastodons' first run. A wild pitch advanced Kacher to third, where she was hit home following a single by Alex Bousquet to right field. Alex Bousquet's sister, Ashleigh Bousquet roped a double to left, scoring her sister from first. Courtney Cronin finished the inning with a single to center field recording the fifth run of the inning for IPFW on four hits. The visitors claimed a 5-4 lead heading into the bottom half of the inning.
After the Chippewas were held without a hit for the first three innings, Summer Knoop got the offense rolling with a double, just over the outstretched glove of the shortstop. Molly Coldren capitalized with a two-run bomb over the left field fence breaking the scoreless tie. Ashley Gilson followed Coldren with a bunt single to third and on the ensuing pitch stole second. CarolAnn Sexauer grabbed her 20th RBI on the season with a rope to left center driving Gilson home. Brittney Horan found the hole between third and shortstop allowing Sexauer to round third and head home, bringing CMU's lead to 4-0.
With one out in the top of the sixth inning, Kayti Hanson notched an infield single for IPFW. Morgan Yuncker settled in the circle and struck the next batter out. On the third strike, Cory DeLamielleure popped up from her catching position and gunned Hanson out at second on an attempted steal, ending the inning.
IPFW added one more insurance run in the top of the seventh, following a hard hit ball off the center fence, scoring Alex Bousquet, who reached base on a two-out single.
Leading the CMU offense was Sexauer, who finished the game 2-for-3 at the plate with an RBI.
Dornbos (9-14) suffered her 14th loss on the year going 4.2 innings, allowing five runs, none of which were earned, on five hits. She also struck out six. Yuncker threw 2.1 innings, giving up one run on five hits.
For the opposing team, Miranda Kramer (10-3) began the game in the circle going four innings and striking out eight. She allowed four earned runs on five hits. Cronin picked up her third save of the year allowing no runs on one hit in three innings of work.
Chippewa Comeback Falls Short
The Maroon and Gold found themselves in a hole early to begin game two. After Chelsea Sundberg began the game by striking out the first three batters, the first batter of the second inning, Ashleigh Bousquet recorded a triple to right center. She was followed in the order by her sister, Alex Bousquet, who blasted a two-run home run deep over the left field fence. Following the home run, three more hits occurred scoring three more runs and the Mastodons led 5-0.
Ashley Gilson doubled to begin the second inning for CMU, and four batters later a sacrifice fly by Brittney Horan allowed Gilson to score, bringing the deficit to 5-1.
Gilson reached base again the bottom of the fourth, following a Mastodons' error. Two batters later Brogan Darwin laced a ball to center, but right at the fielder for the second out of the inning. Gilson was able to tag-up and cut the lead to 5-2.
IPFW responded in the top of the fifth. With the bases loaded the Mastodons drew a walk to score one and followed up with a single bringing home another. After five innings CMU trailed 7-2.
With two outs and runners on first and second in the bottom of the sixth, Darwin found the perfect time to record her first home run on the season. She sent a three-run homer over the left field fence, cutting the lead to 7-5. The Chippewas loaded the bases after Darwin cleared them, but Courtney Cronin got a key strikeout to end the threat.
Darwin finished the game a perfect 2-for-2 at the plate with four RBI. Sundberg (8-7) threw 1.2 innings for CMU giving up four earned runs (five total) on five hits. Yuncker came on in relief in the top of the second and finished the game. She allowed two runs on four hits.
Megan Flenniken (10-6) started for IPFW in the circle going 5.2 innings and giving up five runs (three earned) on five hits. Cronin recorded her second save on the day in 1.1 innings of work and holding CMU to only one hit.