Red Devils Drop Two to Spalding in Season Finale

Red Devils Drop Two to Spalding in Season Finale

PEORIA, Ill. -- Eureka College sophomore shortstop Kerrigan Dura (Edwards, Ill./Brimfield H.S.) went 7-for-7 with three doubles and a walk over the course of Monday's St. Louis Intercollegiate Athletic Conference doubleheader with Spalding, but the Golden Eagles took both games from the Red Devils at the Louisville Slugger Sports Complex in Peoria, Ill. SU won the opener, 7-6, and came from behind to win the nightcap, 4-3.

The defeats eliminate the Red Devils from contention for a SLIAC Tournament berth. Eureka finishes the 2017 season with a 21-15 overall record and a 9-9 mark against SLIAC opponents.

Spalding opened the scoring in the first game with a two-run third inning on RBI singles from Lindsey Hubbard and Brooke Lamon. EC quickly responded in the bottom of the frame, trimming its deficit to 2-1 when Dura singled and later scored on an error in the SU infield.

The Golden Eagles extended their advantage to 4-1 in the fifth. LeeAnna Hundley reached on an error to begin the inning and later scored on a dropped third strike. One batter later, Hubbard's groundout plated another unearned run.

Eureka roared back to tie the game in the bottom of the fifth. Dura started the rally with a double, scoring one batter later on a single from junior center fielder Krysten Wallace (Bartonville, Ill./Limestone H.S.). Back-to-back doubles later in the inning from freshman catcher Morgan Osborn (Washington, Ill./Washington H.S.) and junior pitcher Kali George (East Peoria, Ill./East Peoria H.S.) knotted the score at 4-4.

Spalding took the lead for good thanks to consecutive two-out, run-scoring doubles from Amber Kilburn and Lamon for a 7-4 cushion. George slugged a two-run home run in the bottom of the frame, but Kilburn came on in relief for SU and promptly recorded three consecutive groundouts to end the game.

Dura went 4-for-4 with a double for the Red Devils. Wallace, Osborn and George had two hits apiece.

In game two, EC jumped to a 2-0 lead in the first inning when Osborn hammered a two-run home run over the left-field fence. Two innings later, Osborn added to the cause with an RBI infield single for a 3-0 lead.

The Golden Eagles pulled within a run in the fifth. Caroline Hale started the frame with a solo home run. After SU loaded the bases with a double, a single and a fielder's choice, Hubbard's RBI groundout made it 3-2. A strikeout and a flyout ended the jam with the Red Devils still in front.

In the seventh, A single and a walk put two runners on base for Lamon, whose grounder was misplayed in the EC infield, allowing Laken Heavner to score for a 3-3 tie. Two batters later, Kaylin Ruckner gave the visitors their first lead of the game, 4-3, with a run-scoring single down the left field line.

Two walks in the bottom of the seventh put the tying run in scoring position for EC, but a groundout ended Eureka's threat and secured the Golden Eagles' doubleheader sweep.

Dura was 3-for-3 in game two with two runs scored and a walk. Osborn had two hits and drove in all three of the Red Devils' runs.

Monday's games were played inside the dome at the Louisville Slugger Sports Complex in Peoria after heavy weekend rainfall made EC's campus playing surface unplayable.