Grace Splits a Pair with Goshen

A strong offensive performance from Samantha Johnson highlighted Grace’s softball team on Saturday at Miller Field.

The Lady Lancers fell 2-1 in the opener before crushing the Maple Leafs in the second game, 9-1. Johnson finished 5-for-6 during the doubleheader.

Despite outhitting Goshen in the opening game, 8-6, the Lady Lancers came up one run short on the scoreboard. The Maple Leafs (2-30; 1-21 Crossroads League) scored their two runs in the fourth, thanks to back-to-back doubles.

Grace had numerous opportunities to score but came up empty in several key moments. In the third inning, Grace had runners on second and third with one out but did not score. In the fifth inning, the Lady Lancers (15-21; 11-9 CL) loaded the bases with nobody out, but Goshen’s Jessica Reed struck out the next two batters and escaped the inning unharmed with a pop out.

Brittany Melzoni finally put the Lady Lancers on the scoreboard with a solo homer. Samantha Johnson reached base on the next at-bat via error, but the final two batters for Grace struck out.

Melzoni and Johnson were 2-for-3 in defeat, and Amanda Bowman tossed two innings of scoreless relief.

Grace put its first-game woes far behind in the first inning of the second game, exploding offensively for four runs. Brooke Shell led off with a triple, and Clarissa Knight singled her in. Later in the inning, Paige Petrone tallied an RBI single, and Tiffany Featherston drove in two more runs with a single.

Alex Shipley laid down a squeeze bunt in the second inning to score Samantha Johnson. Johnson drove in Featherston with a two-out single in the third.

The Cougars got on the scoreboard in the fourth with three singles, but the Lady Lancers ended the inning with a double play.

The game ended due to the run rule in the fifth as Grace pummeled the Maple Leafs for three more runs. Johnson brought in Morgan Hutcheson and Melzoni with a double, and Johnson scored the clinching run when she scurried across home plate on a wild pitch. Johnson was 3-for-3 in the second game with two runs scored, two doubles and three RBIs. Featherston and Knight finished 2-for-2.

Alex Shipley took the win from the mound, surrendering seven hits, one run and a walk in a complete-game effort.

The Lady Lancers’ next games are at home at Tuesday against Bethel starting at 3 p.m.

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