FSU BESTS HILLSDALE TWICE TO CLOSE OUT A PRODUCTIVE WEEK
FSU

FSU BESTS HILLSDALE TWICE TO CLOSE OUT A PRODUCTIVE WEEK

Rachel Wade
Sophomore centerfielder Rachel Wade gets set to make the catch in Saturday's matchup against Hillsdale.

A three-hit shutout pitching peformance by Holly Bruntjens in the opening game of Saturday's (April 11) matchup against the Hillsdale Chargers was impressive, but so too was the outcome of the second game as the nationally eighth-ranked Ferris State softball team rallied from a 5-1 deficit with a five-run sixth inning to post a 9-7 win and complete a Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) doubleheader sweep at the FSU Softball Field in Big Rapids, Mich.

Game One - Ferris State 6, Hillsdale 0

Ferris State pitcher Holly Bruntjens (Gladstone) threw a three-hit shutout against Hillsdale Saturday (April 11) afternoon as the nationally eighth-ranked Bulldog softball team blanked Hillsdale, 6-0, in its opening game of a home league doubleheader.

Bruntjens, a senior, improved her record to 9-3 on the season as she struck out seven Hillsdale batters in the complete-game decision. Offensively, eight different Ferris State batters produced at least a base hit with senior first baseman Amanda Jager (Kalamazoo/Comstock) and freshman third baseman Makenzi Peterson (Big Rapids) tallying a squad-best two hits as part of the Bulldogs' 10 total for the contest.

The Bulldogs scored an unearned run in the bottom of the first inning before scoring two runs in the third on four hits. A pair of RBI singles by junior designated player Rhea Flores (Dearborn Heights/Southgate Anderson) and Makenzi Peterson accounted for the two FSU third-inning runs.

Ferris State upped its lead to 5-0 in the fourth frame with a pair of unearned runs and tacked on one more in the sixth inning as a result of Holly Bruntjens' run-scoring single.

Game Two - Ferris State 9, Hillsdale 7

The Ferris State softball team scored five runs in the sixth inning to take its first lead of the game en route to a come-from-behind 9-7 game two win over Hillsdale Saturday (April 11) in Big Rapids.

Ferris State had trailed 5-1 through the first four innings after the Chargers tallied four runs on two hits with a FSU error in the fourth inning. But in the top of the sixth, the Bulldogs' offense was able to get back on track as Ferris erupted for five runs on as many hits coupled with three Charger errors. The decisive hit came off the bat off sophomore shortstop Lynsay Weaver (Bay City/All Saints), who smacked a two-run shot over the center field fence for her third of the season to give FSU a 6-5 lead.

Kayle Stevenson
Junior second baseman Amanda Harrington, who collected a combined three hits in the two-game set versus Hillsdale, puts down a sacrifice bunt during Saturday's action. (Photo by Ed Hyde)

FSU would post three more runs in the seventh on just one hit, but was aided by two HC errors. A RBI sacrifice fly by Weaver and a two-run scoring double by sophomore outfielder Rachel Wade (Canton) represented the Bulldogs' final three runs in the game. Hillsdale would make the outcome close in the bottom half of the seventh as the Chargers scored twice to get within two runs (9-7). However, senior pitcher Holly Bruntjens was able to get HC's Devon Trimmer on a flyout to right field for the game's final out and preserve the win.

Bruntjens, in relief of junior starter Kayle Stevenson (Holland/West Ottawa), posted the win as she threw three-plus innings in relief. Bruntjens, who upped her record to 10-3 this spring, struck out four and allowed two hits. Stevenson received the starting nod against her former team and pitched 3.1 innings while striking out five and giving up five hits to go with four runs.

For the game, four different Ferris State batters recorded at least two hits apiece - Rachel Wade, junior second baseman Amanda Harrington (St. Joseph/Stevensville-Lakeshore), sophomore catcher Rachel Mueller (Santa Clarita, Calif./Valencia), and Lynsay Weaver.

The doubleheader wins improved Ferris State's record to 26-4 overall and 12-2 in the GLIAC to date this season. Ferris has presently won nine of its last 10 outings and 15 of its last 17 encounters.

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