FERRIS STATE SPLITS A TWO-GAME SERIES AT SAGINAW VALLEY STATE
|Ferris State splits doubleheader at Saginaw Valley State in first 2009 regular-season conference showdown between the two teams.
No April Fools, but the Ferris State University softball team experienced the ups and downs of the sport in Wednesday's (April 4) Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) twinbill against the Saginaw Valley State Cardinals at University Center, Mich. On a high note, Ferris won its sixth straight game and snapped the Cardinals' 14-game winning streak with a 5-2 win in the opener. Unfortunately, the outcome of the second game was a disappointment as the Bulldogs gave up four runs in the contest's final inning to suffer a 5-4 loss to Saginaw Valley State.
Game One - Ferris State 5, Saginaw Valley State 2
The seventh-ranked Ferris State softball team accomplished a feat no other team was able to do the previous 14 tries as the Bulldogs recorded a 5-2 victory over Saginaw Valley State Wednesday (April 1) afternoon in game one of a GLIAC doubleheader at University Center, Mich.
The win not only extended Ferris State's current winning streak to six straight this spring, but represented Saginaw Valley State's first defeat in its last 15 appearances to date.
Ferris State, which runs its overall record to 17-2 and 3-0 in the conference this season to date, accounted for the game's initial run in the top of the first inning on senior catcher Krystle Bailey's (Wyoming/Rogers) RBI double to score sophomore outfielder Rachel Wade (Canton), who had a leadoff single.
Saginaw Valley State (19-6 overall and 6-1 GLIAC) tied the game at 1-1 in the bottom half of the second thanks to a two-out RBI double by former Bulldog Amanda Briggs. But, the Bulldogs came back in the top of the third frame by erupting for three runs on four hits. Wade started the scoring for FSU with a triple to right field and junior second baseman Amanda Harrington (St. Joseph/Stevensville-Lakeshore) followed with a two-run shot to give the visitors a 3-1 lead. Bailey hit an offering by SVSU pitcher Jade Fulton for a two-base hit and after the first out, senior first baseman Amanda Jager (Kalamazoo/Comstock) doubled down the left field line for the Bulldogs' third run in the inning.
A two-out run-scoring double off the bat of Harrington in the top of the sixth gave Ferris another insurance run. A solo homer by SVSU's Ashley Jordan in the bottom of the seventh narrowed the Bulldogs' lead, but FSU senior pitcher Holly Bruntjens (Gladstone) was able to get the last two outs and preserve the victory.
FSU's top three hitters in the lineup - Wade, Harrington, and Bailey all produced two hits apiece as did Holly Bruntjens, who helped her cause with two singles as the Bulldogs accumulated 11 hits for the game.
The win improved Bruntjens' record to 5-1 in the pitching circle this campaign as the veteran hurler allowed seven SVSU hits and two runs (one earned) while fanning three.
Fulton (9-3) absorbed the loss for the Cardinals as she threw 3.1 innings in a starting role. She gave up eight hits and four runs (all earned) to go with one strikeout.
Game Two - Saginaw Valley State 5, Ferris State 4
Ferris State was on the verge of sweeping Saginaw Valley State in Wednesday's GLIAC doubleheader, but the host Cardinals rallied for four runs in the seventh to hand the Bulldogs a 5-4 game two setback at University Center, Mich.
Ferris State held a 4-1 lead entering the bottom of the seventh after scoring twice in the top of the sixth inning. However, Saginaw Valley State was able to produce four runs on three hits along with a Bulldog error in the seventh to post the win. The winning runs for the Cardinals occurred with two outs as shortstop Nicole Fick knocked in the winning runs with a two-RBI double off senior relief pitcher Holly Bruntjens.
Senior first baseman Amanda Jager generated Ferris' first three runs of the contest with a solo home run in the first inning. She then followed with a RBI sacrifice fly in the fourth and delivered a run-scoring single in the sixth. FSU's other run would come in the sixth frame on a SVSU throwing error.
Jager and senior catcher Krystle Bailey each totaled a squad-best two hits apiece to lead Ferris State, which drops to 17-3 overall and 3-1 in the conference with the loss.
Bruntjens, who claimed the win in game one, was tagged with the setback as she allowed one hit and a run in one-third innings of relief. Junior Kayle Stevenson (Holland/West Ottawa) threw the first 4.1 innings and fanned two before yielding to senior Shannon Roney (Wheaton, Ill./Glen Ellyn Glenbard South), who scattered four hits and gave up three runs while striking out four in two innings of relief work.