Softball sweeps Delaware State, 2-0 & 12-3 (5)
Another strong pitching performance by junior Sarah Sigrest and a good effort at the plate in the second game helped the JU Softball team sweep Delaware State, 2-0 & 12-3 (5), in a doubleheader on Thursday night at the JU Softball Complex

Sigrest (7-3) showed why she was named the A-Sun “Pitcher of the Week” in game one after fanning eight Hornet (5-6) batters and scattering four hits in seven shutout innings for the win.

The Dolphins (15-9) scratched across 12 runs in game two with the help of homers by sophomore Sarah Simon and freshman Karson Tuck.

“I felt like we took care of business,” said JU head coach Amanda Lehotak. “Sarah was sharp once again even though we didn’t get a lot of offense in the first game. We made adjustments in the night cap and bounced back nicely at the plate. Overall, it was a good night and we look forward to some rest before we get back at it next week.”

Sophomore Olivia Kline (8-4) earned the win in the second game after allowing a hit and striking out three batters in three scoreless relief innings. Kline and junior Kayla Ouellet also recorded two hits at the plate to help the cause.

In game one, Ouellet opened the bottom of the first inning by reaching on an error before scoring in the next at-bat on a double by junior Amanda Schmidt. Simon followed with a walk, while freshman Meagan Balding singled to left field to load the bases. After a pop out, Delaware State starter and eventual losing pitcher Casey Beighly walked junior Brittany Eppley which plated Schmidt for the 2-0 JU advantage.

In the top of the second inning, Sigrest got the first out before allowing a triple to Andrea Waters. Ashley Davis was hit by a pitch and stole second to pose a huge threat, but Sigrest struck out the next two batters to end the inning.

Beighly led off the fourth inning with a single to left field and got pinch ran for by Kelsey Lewis who stole second. After two outs by Sigrest, Lewis advanced to third as Davis reached on an error. Sigrest got Skye Boris to leave the runners stranded in scoring position.

Sigrest closed the contest by retiring nine of the final 10 batters to secure her second straight shutout win.

Beighly (2-3) allowed two runs, one earned, on four hits and three walks in six innings to take the loss.

In game two, the Dolphin bats came alive as they scored five runs in the first inning for an early lead.

Schmidt reached a one-out single in the first inning, while Simon followed with another single and Balding walked to load the bases. Schmidt scored on a wild pitch during Tuck’s at-bat and Eppley plated Simon with a slow-rolling infield single to third base. The Dolphins made it 3-0 as Balding scored on a wild pitch, while Kline later plated Eppley and senior Katie Kelly with a double to left center field to round out the inning.

The Hornets cut into the JU lead in the second inning after breaking a scoreless drought of 21.2 innings by scoring on wild pitch, double steal and single to make it a 5-3 contest.

Simon and Tuck answered for the Dolphins by leading off the second and third innings, respectively, with home runs. Eppley and Kelly each followed Tuck’s homer with a walk before scoring a on a two-out single by Ouellet to give the Dolphins a 9-3 lead.

The Dolphins plated three runs in the fourth inning from a single by Kelly, a bases-loaded hit by pitch by freshman Miranda Fleming and a wild pitch. Kline pitched a scoreless fifth to secure the win.

Ashlyn Campbell (1-2) took the loss for Delaware State by allowing five runs on four innings in an inning of work. Stephanie Sarris and Waters combined to give up seven runs in three innings of relief.

The Dolphins are off for the weekend before returning to Clearwater, Fla. on March 17 to face Texas A&M in a single game prior to the USF The Game Tournament. First pitch against the Aggies is set for 1:30 p.m.