Lake Forest Splits Pitching Duels with Elmhurst
The Forester softball team split a doubleheader with visiting Elmhurst College on Wednesday, falling 3-1 in the opener before prevailing 3-2 in game two. Lake Forest starting pitchers Cami Daun and Molly Thomsen surrendered just two earned runs apiece.
Daun pitched all seven innings of game one and allowed seven base hits, a career-low for a complete game performance. Elmhurst took the lead on a solo home run in the second, scored an unearned tally in the third, and belted another solo homer in the fourth.
The Foresters were blanked on just one base hit until making things interesting with two outs in the seventh inning. Junior Leslie Harshey doubled into the left field corner and came home on a single by sophomore Nikki Miller. The comeback effort ended there, however.
Sophomore Ashley Cuthbert, who had the other hit in the opener, doubled down the left field line in the first innind of game two, sending freshman Clare Kavanagh to third base with no outs. After a strikeout, a walk to sophomore Aubrey Pendegraft, and a fielder's choice out at the plate, Miller singled in Cuthbert and Pendegraft to give the Foresters the lead.
The Bluejays scored their first run against Thomsen and had the bases loaded with just one out in the top of the third inning. A line drive out to Pendegraft at third base and popout to Kavanagh at second, however, ended the potential rally.
The home team got that run back in the bottom of the third. Cuthbert led off the inning with a walk and freshman Sam Ritsema lined a single off the third baseman's glove. Cuthbert then scored on a throwing error by the Elmhurst shortstop.
The Elmhurst fourth inning was very similar to the third. The visitors had already trimmed the deficit back to a single run and had the bases loaded with just one out when Miller fielded a ground ball at first base and threw home for the force. The next hitter grounded to Ritsema at shortstop to end the inning.
Thomsen allowed four base hits and issued four walks in the first four innings but limited the damage. Sophomore Kelli Chesnut blanked the Bluejays in the fifth inning and stranded the bases loaded in the sixth. Thomsen re-entered the contest in the seventh and retired the visitors in order to seal the victory.
Miller drove in three of the Foresters' four runs on the day and she is now tied for second on the squad with 17 runs batted in this season. She and Cuthbert were the only players on the team with a hit in both contests. Harshey's seven-game hitting streak was snapped in the nightcap.
Lake Forest will resume Midwest Conference play this weekend, hosting a doubleheader against Illinois College at 1:00 Saturday afternoon and another versus Monmouth College at the same time on Sunday. Saturday is Parents Day and the team will be collecting donations for the Friends of Jaclyn Foundation on Sunday.