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Brockport splits doubleheader with Houghton

By: Zachary Harnischfeger

HOUGHTON, NY-- The Brockport Golden Eagles softball team came into the matchup on a four-game losing streak and were looking to turn things around. Strong pitching in game one led the Golden Eagles to a 4-2 win over the Houghton Highlanders. In game two, sloppy defense tripped up Brockport leading to a 9-4 Highlanders win.

"I'm really proud of the girls," Brockport head coach Mary Karen Wheat said. "To take two in a day is always hard. We just need to make sure that we stay consistent with our pitching, but I am so proud of them for coming out and battling through that first game with the 4-2 win."

Game One

The Golden Eagles got off to a fast start in game one. Riley Barrett reached second on a fielding error by Houghton left fielder Keri Wesneski to lead off the game. Two batters later, left-fielder Olivia Simone doubled and drove in Barrett to give the Golden Eagles a 1-0 lead.

Simone during an at-bat in Florida. Photo Credit: Brockport Athletics

Later in the top of the first inning, Simone scored on a fielding error by Houghton shortstop Carlee Miller to give Brockport the 2-0 lead. The Highlanders answered right back in the bottom of the first inning.

After a leadoff single by center fielder Lydia Peterson and an error by second basemen Erin Dougherty that allowed Peterson to get to second, third basemen Danielle Nelson brought Peterson home on a single to cut the deficit to 2-1. Nelson later came around to score on a bunt by right fielder Jennifer Page to tie the game at two apiece after one inning of play. These would be the only runs the Highlanders would score in the game.

In the top of the third inning, Simone led off with a double. She later scored on a groundout to second from first basemen Paige Wentland. This gave Brockport a 3-2 lead. Two innings later, in the top of the fifth inning, Simone scored on a fielding error by second basemen Alisabeth Crandall to make it a 4-2 game. This was the final score of the game.

Brockport pitcher Kendall Phillips earned her second win of the year after tossing four scoreless innings of relief. She allowed one hit, three walks, and struck out five.

"She's just really gritty," coach Wheat said. "The biggest thing with her is we're just building her confidence as a freshman and her trying to really see how good of a pitcher she is. She is getting better every game and that's what we're excited about. "

Phillips delivering a pitch in a game in Florida. Photo Credit: Brockport Athletics

Game Two

The Highlanders got on the board first in the bottom of the second inning after Chyanne Bushyhead scored on a double by Wesneski. Two innings later, in the bottom of the third inning, the Highlanders scored two runs on passed balls to give them a 3-0 lead.

The Golden Eagles were held scoreless through three innings. In the top of the fourth inning, Brockport scored three runs, including an RBI double by left fielder Danielle Wenzek, to make it a one-run game. Houghton responded with four runs of their own in the bottom of the fourth inning giving them a 7-3 lead.

In the top of the sixth inning, Miller added to the Highlanders lead with a solo home run. Later in the top of the sixth, Adelynn Killian singled and drove in second basemen Kareena Ulfig to make it a 9-3 game. The Golden Eagles scratched across a run in the top of the seventh and were defeated 9-4.

Brockport shortstop Natalie Faas knows that the team can't let the loss keep them down heading into games later this week.

"We really just need to keep our energy up," Faas said. "We have to stay confident and push through even when we are hitting lulls in the game and just play 14 straight innings."

With the doubleheader split, Brockport is now 3-9 on the season. They will be back in action on the road against the Nazareth Golden Flyers for a doubleheader matchup starting at 3 p.m. on Friday March 29.

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