Lake Forest Splits Doubleheader at Cornell

Lake Forest Splits Doubleheader at Cornell

Senior first baseman Sally Snarski had five base hits on the day as the Forester softball team won 8-3 before falling 3-2 in nine innings at Cornell College on Saturday.

Snarski was 3-for-4 in the opener. She also scored and drove in a run during a four-run seventh inning. The rally began with a two-out walk by senior catcher Alex Hemmer and senior third baseman Kaleigh Ambrose followed with a base hit. Snarski doubled in Hemmer to make the score 5-3. Sophomore shortstop Kat Beall then grounded to third but an errant throw scored two more runs. Beall came home with the final run of the game on a single by sophomore centerfielder Sydney Gardner.

The Foresters also scored first in the game on a strange play. Junior rightfielder Tara Airola was batting with the bases loaded and one out and popped up a bunt that landed just past the pitcher and third baseman. The throw home beat the runner for the force but pulled the catcher off the plate, allowing one run to score. The catcher threw to third to get what the Ram players thought was the second out on the play and third of the inning. As they left the field, freshman designated player Alyssa Grimm, who began the play on first base, raced home to make the score 2-0.

Cornell scored a run in the bottom of the second and took the lead with two more in the fourth.

The score remained 3-2 until the top of the sixth when Hemmer led off the frame with a game-tying home run. It was her fourth homer of the season and the 21st of her career, tying her with Shelby Neill (2007-10) for third place in team history. Ambrose then drew a walk and Snarski singled to left. Beall bunted the runners over and a well-executed squeeze play by Gardner brought home sophomore pinch-runner Callie Schaser with the lead run.

Forester senior pitcher Jessi Werner earned the victory and is now 11-4 after allowing just one earned run and striking out six in five-and-two-third innings. Junior Jenny McTague relieved Werner with two on and two out in the bottom of the sixth. She struck out the next batter to escape the jam and retired the side in order in the seventh to earn her second save of the season and the fourth of her career.

McTague tossed a complete game in the second contest, striking out four batters and allowing just six hits and a walk in eight-and-two-third innings.

Cornell took the early lead with a run in the bottom of the third inning but Lake Forest evened the score in the fourth. Snarski drew a one-out walk and advanced to second on an infield single by Beall. Two batters later McTague singled in freshman pinch-runner Emma Carlson with the tying run.

The Rams regained the lead in the bottom of the fourth but the visitors tied the game again in the next half inning. Senior second baseman Vasi Panos singled with one out and three consecutive two-out base hits by Ambrose, Snarski, and Beall brought home one run but Ambrose was cut down at the plate trying to give the Foresters the lead.

Lake Forest had another runner tagged out at the plate in the sixth and left a pair of runners on base in the seventh. McTague retired 15 batters in a row until, with two outs in the ninth, a single, an error, and another base hit brought home the winning run for the Rams.

The loss ended the Foresters' nine-game winning streak, which matched the fourth-longest run in team history. The split left Lake Forest with an 18-11 overall record and a 12-2 mark in Midwest Conference play. Cornell is now 16-14 overall and 9-5 in the league.

The Foresters will continue conference play in Iowa on Sunday when the squad travels to Grinnell College for a 1:00 p.m. doubleheader.