LOUISVILLE, Ky. – The Eureka softball team opened a four-game weekend series at Spalding with a split against the Golden Eagles.
The Red Devils put together a three-run rally in the seventh inning to seal a 6-5 win in Game 1 and fell 10-2 in Game 2 to complete a non-conference doubleheader.
Eureka's Jordan Heinz (Washington, Ill./Washington) had five hits on the day and senior pitcher Torre Koontz (Lakewood, Ill./Shelbyville) picked up her first win of the season in the circle for the Red Devils.
Game 1: Eureka 6, Spalding 5
EC softball picked up its first win of the 2021 season after trailing from the bottom of the first inning until the top of the seventh.
Down 5-3 in the final inning, the Red Devils' top of the order came to bat. Ladoff hitter Raelyn Payne (Lexington, Ill./Lexington) walked, Heinz reached on a bunt and Allison Cagley (Fairbury, Ill./Prairie Central) singled down the right field line to load the bases.
Spalding got a runner on in the bottom half, but Koontz and the Red Devils kept them off the board to secure the win.
Koontz tossed six innings and held Spalding to five runs on nine hits and three walks, and she struck out a pair. Junior Sidney Wightman (Waterloo, Ill./Gibault Catholic) contributed to the win by tossing a scoreless fifth inning before Koontz returned to the circle in the sixth.
The Red Devils notched nine hits and drew three walks. Heinz went 3-for-4 and scored three runs, while Remi Ferguson (East Peoria, Ill./East Peoria) contributed a two-run double in the first inning.
After that, Spalding came back with four runs on four hits in the bottom of the first. It stayed 4-2 until Ledbetter drove in Heinz with a single in the fifth to make it 4-3.
The Golden Eagles added another an RBI single by Ally Klein in the bottom of the sixth. Klein and Grace Sweat each had three hits for the home team.
EC scored three runs on five hits and two walks against Spalding starting pitcher Olivia Carter in the first five innings. Then, the visitors scored three runs on four hits against reliever Bella Velez.
Game 2: Spalding 10, Eureka 2
Heinz contributed two hits, Kennedy Savage (Bloomington, Ill./Normal) went 2-for-2 with a walk and Ferguson doubled for the second time of the day and drove in a run, but that was as much offense as Eureka could muster in Game 2.
Spalding's Erica McMann limited EC to two runs on five hits and four walks while striking out three in six innings.
The Golden Eagles racked up 10 runs on 12 hits with two doubles and a triple.
On Sunday, the Red Devils (1-3) will open St. Louis Intercollegiate Athletic Conference season against Spalding (3-1) in a 10 a.m. doubleheader.