Pictured is Grace's softball team huddling during their sweep of Huntington on Wednesday **photo taken by Brook Vosler
Grace’s softball team enjoyed 21 runs in a doubleheader sweep of Huntington on Wednesday.
The Lady Lancers (19-14, 12-8 Crossroads League) won the first game 12-1 in five innings and held on for a 9-8 victory in the second game at Miller Field.
Grace jumped in front 3-0 with a three-run second inning. Chandler Elliott, Ashley Kleinbub and Alex Shipley singled in the inning, and Shipley scampered home on a stolen base for the final run of the inning.
Huntington pulled one run back in the fourth with a solo home run, but the Lady Lancers were about to effectively end the game in the bottom half of the inning.
Grace batted around in the fourth, ripping off nine runs on eight hits. Chelsea Whitesell set the tone for the inning by leading things off with a double. With the bases loaded, Brooke Shell doubled to deep right field to plate three runs. Shell later scored on a squeeze bunt by Samantha Johnson for the second out of the inning.
The Lady Lancers were not finished with two outs, however. Grace hit five consecutive singles to score two runs, and Kati Gregory drove in two more runs with a double down the left field line.
Elliott finished off the Foresters (10-14, 7-9 CL) from the mound in the fifth, ending the game due the run rule. Elliott allowed six hits and struck out two in a complete-game performance.
Elliott, Kleinbub, Whitesell and Shipley were each 2-for-3 with two runs scored, and Shipley also drove in two runs. Clarissa Knight was also 2-for-3, and Shell had two RBIs.
Grace continued to flex its offensive muscle in the second game. Knight doubled to the fence in the first inning, allowing Johnson to score from first.
The Foresters responded in the top of the second inning, scoring two runs to go on top 2-1. Brooke Shell put Grace back on top with one swing in the bottom of the inning. With the bases loaded and one out, Shell laced a two-run single to right field. Elliott and Kleinbub had back-to-back two-run singles later in the inning.
Huntington trailed 7-2 entering the top of the fourth, but the Foresters did not back down. The Foresters showed resilience, tying the game at 7-7.
Grace moved ahead 9-7 after timely hitting put the Lady Lancers back on top. Shipley doubled in the fifth, and Hannah Herbster drove her in with a single. Johnson led off the sixth with an infield single and promptly stole second. She came around the score the go-ahead run off an RBI single from Elliott.
Huntington threatened in the bottom of the seventh, pushing across one run to make the score 9-8. The Foresters had runners on first and second with nobody out when Knight made the defensive play of the game. Knight fielded a ground ball at short, tagged the runner from second base and gunned down the batter at first. Elliott then struck out the final batter of the game to get the save from the mound.
Herbster batted 3-for-4 in the game, and Johnson was 2-for-4 with three runs and two stolen bases. Shell and Shipley each notched two hits, and Elliott was 2-for-3 with three RBIs.
The Lady Lancers have two more home dates remaining this week. Grace hosts St. Francis on Friday at 3 p.m. and Goshen on Saturday at 1 p.m.