Red Devils Come Up Empty at Westminster

Photo courtesy of Cory McCain.
Photo courtesy of Cory McCain.

FULTON, Mo. -- The Eureka College softball team dropped both contests of a St. Louis Intercollegiate Athletic Conference doubleheader at Westminster, Saturday afternoon. The Blue Jays won the opener, 4-1, before coming from behind to steal game two, 7-6.

In game one, Brooke Laidley gave the Blue Jays an early 1-0 lead with a home run in the bottom of the second inning. EC answered in the fourth, knotting the score at 1-1 when senior catcher Lexi Litwiller (Eureka, Ill./Eureka H.S./Lincoln) doubled home freshman Courtney Kurtz (Minooka, Ill./Minooka H.S.).

Westminster quickly regained a 3-1 lead in the bottom half of the frame on Brittany Hodge's two-out, two-run single. The score remained 3-1 until the sixth when Callie Collier's single up the middle scored Hodge for a 4-1 cushion. Trailing by three in the seventh, the Red Devils were retired in order to end the game.

The Red Devils were held to two hits in the opener. Junior right-hander Kali George (East Peoria, Ill./East Peoria H.S.) threw 6.0 innings in the circle.

Eureka jumped in front 3-0 early in the game two. Back-to-back WC errors put two runners on base for freshman pitcher Erin Smith (Dunlap, Ill./Dunlap H.S.), who drilled her third collegiate home run.

The Blue Jays got on the board with an unearned run in the bottom of the inning and took their first lead of the game with a four-run fifth inning. Josie Cotter slugged a three-run homer, followed by an RBI single from Erica Burney for a 5-3 advantage.

Facing a two-run deficit and down to their final chance in the seventh, the Red Devils rallied. George tied the game at 5-5 with a bases-loaded single. Senior third baseman Bridget Bankes (East Peoria, Ill./East Peoria H.S.) ultimately gave EC the lead two batters later, singling to left field to score Morgan Osborn (Washington, Ill./Washington H.S.) for a 6-5 edge. 

WC quickly recovered in the bottom of the inning. Amber Tepen led off the inning with a single, setting the stage for Cotter's walk-off, two-run home run and a 7-6 final.

Sophomore shortstop Kerrigan Dura (Edwards, Ill./Brimfield H.S.), George and Bankes had two hits apiece to lead EC's 10-hit attack in game two. Litwiller and Dura each doubled.

Eureka will continue its busy weekend against SLIAC opponents on Sunday in a noon doubleheader at Webster in St. Louis, Mo.