The Foresters dropped the opener but rolled 10-1 in game two at Lawrence University on Monday to finish the regular season atop the Midwest Conference standings and earn the right to host this weekend's 2019 MWC Tournament.
Lake Forest, which had already clinched at least a share of the title after winning twice on Sunday, took the early lead in the opener with a tally in the opening frame. Senior centerfielder Maria Zepeda singled to start the game and eventually came around to score on a single by senior shortstop Alyssa Grimm.
Unfortunately for he visitors, that turned out to be the only run they scored in the game. Lawrence plated three in the bottom of the frame and put eight on the board in the third to earn the 11-1 five-inning victory.
Game two was similar to the opener, except it was Lawrence who grabbed the lead in the first and the Foresters who did the responding with three runs in their next at-bat. A wild pitch brought home the first tally and Zepeda followed with a two-run homer, her fourth of the season. Lake Forest added a run in the fourth on a base hit by junior first baseman Riley Frisbie before blowing the game open with a six-run fifth. Junior rightfielder Maddie Trost singled in the first run of the rally and two Foresters came home on a base hit by sophomore designated player Hannah Kalnicky. A wild throw from the Lawrence catcher on a steal attempt plated the fourth run and RBI singles by Zepeda and senior leftfielder Diamond Owens finished off the scoring.
After giving up a pair of hits in the opening inning, pitcher Kyra Lenzi allowed just one more single the rest of the way to earn the victory and improve to 8-3 with a 2.30 earned run average this season. She struck out a pair of Vikings and walked just one in the five-inning contest.
Lake Forest completed the regular season 21-15 overall and 14-4 in MWC play while Lawrence finished the year with an overall record of 13-21 and a league mark of 9-9.
Next weekend's double-elimination MWC Tournament will begin with Illinois College taking on St. Norbert College Friday morning at 10:00 and the Foresters hosting Grinnell College at noon. The losers will face off at 2:00 in the afternoon and the winners at 4:00. Friday's 1-1 teams will play again Saturday morning at 10:00 with the winner needing two more victories over Saturday's 2-0 team to win the tourney and earn the league's automatic bid to the NCAA Division III Tournament.