Forester Bats Come Alive in Sweep of Chicago

Photo by Maxie Mottlowitz
Photo by Maxie Mottlowitz

For the second time in her career, junior Jenny McTague belted a pair of home runs while pitching a one-hit shutout as the Lake Forest College softball team defeated the University of Chicago 10-4 and 8-0 in five innings on Tuesday.

McTague struck out six batters and did not issue a walk in game two of the doubleheader. The Maroons' only baserunner came on a two-out infield single in the top of the fifth inning and they did not hit a ball out of the infield in the contest.

The Foresters started the scoring with one out in the bottom of the second inning on back-to-back solo home runs by senior third baseman Kaleigh Ambrose and McTague. 

The home team also cleared the fence twice in the bottom of the fourth. Senior catcher Alex Hemmer led off the frame with a long homer to left-center and, after a single by senior first baseman Sally Snarski and a walk by Ambrose, McTague hit her second round-tripper of the game down the left field line. Later, with two outs in the inning, freshman leftfielder Maria Zepeda lined a double into the right field corner and came home on a single to left by sophomore centerfielder Sydney Gardner to make the score 7-0.

Hemmer was hit by a pitch to lead off the bottom of the fifth. Sophomore pinch-runner Callie Schaser then advanced on a pair of wild pitches and scored when Ambrose singled through the left side of the infield.

McTague also hit two home runs and threw a five-inning one-hitter against Grinnell College as a freshman on April 27, 2014. She is the only player in program history to hit multiple homers as the pitcher in a game.

The Foresters had nine base hits in game two, including two each by McTague, Ambrose, and Zepeda.

Lake Forest, which also had nine hits in the opener, took the lead on a two-out, four-run rally in the bottom of the third inning. Hemmer reached on an error, advanced to second on a walk by Snarski, and came around to score on a single up the middle by Ambrose. After a walk loaded the bases, sophomore second baseman Alex Milat cleared them with a line drive double over the leftfielder's head.

Chicago scored three runs in the top of the fourth inning but the Foresters responded with six of their own. Beall plated the first two on a home run that just cleared the left field fence. After Hemmer and Ambrose singled and advanced to second and third on a wild pitch, sophomore designated player Jillian Rashid singled through the left side of the infield to score the third run of the frame. Ambrose then beat the throw home on a slow ground ball off the bat of Milat, who later scored all the way from second base on an infield single by Zepeda. The final run of the inning was scored by junior rightfielder Tara Airola when the Chicago catcher's attempt to throw out Zepeda stealing second base got past the second baseman.

The Maroons scored once more in the top of the fifth and left five runners on base in the final three innings combined.

Just two of the four runs allowed by Forester senior pitcher Jessi Werner were earned and she struck out four batters while walking a pair in the complete game victory. She improved to 4-3 on the season.

The doubleheader sweep raised Lake Forest's record on the season to 5-8 while Chicago fell to 8-3.

The Foresters will begin Midwest Conference play with a doubleheader at Monmouth College Saturday at 1:00 p.m. Lake Forest will also play at Illinois College at the same time on Sunday.