Jimmies softball splits doubleheader against Briar Cliff
The second game is the first time the Jimmies have won a game with less than five hits in a game since they were held to four hits in a 1-0 win on April 27, 2018.
ABERDEEN, S.D. — The University of Jamestown went 2-for-11 with runners on base and it cost them in a 3-2 loss to Briar Cliff University on Monday, April 17, at Northern State’s Koehler Hall of Fame Field.
Both teams’ starters held the opponents' offense in check in the early going as through the first three innings the teams combined only to give up two hits and three total base runners. The Chargers were able to break through against the Jimmies’ Sunny Halsey in the top of the fourth when Callie Billings led off the inning with a single and eventually scored on a Sydney Lierman single to take a 1-0 lead.
The Jimmies responded in the bottom of the fourth when Mackenzie Lefebvre crushed a two-run shot to center field to give the Jimmies the 2-1 lead. The Chargers took the lead for good in the sixth when Lierman continued her big day with a two run single to push her team in front 3-2.
The Jimmies' two hits with runners on base were the Lefebvre home run and a Gentrey Turin single in the bottom of the seventh to set up first and second nobody out.
The Jimmies starter Sunny Halsey pitched a complete game giving up seven hits and three runs while striking out seven hitters and walking two. The Chargers starter Maddi Duncan also pitched a complete game as she gave up two runs on six hits and two walks while striking out nine hitters.
“Some of the girls said she was the best pitcher we’ve seen all year,” Jimmies head coach Kevin Gall said. “She had a nice riseball, good spin on it, had a decent changeup. I thought we battled her pretty tough, we obviously had a chance to win it. We make one pitch, we throw a screwball or maybe a changeup, hindsight is 20-20, on what we should’ve done because we gave up a two-run single. We throw a better pitch there, we throw a riseball that rises instead well then they don’t score two and we win.”
BCU 3, UJ 2
BCU: 0 0 0 1 0 2 0–3 7 0
UJ: 0 0 0 2 0 0 0–2 6 0
WP: Maddi Duncan (13-5) LP: Sunny Halsey (5-10)
BCU: Sydney Lierman RBI single, Callie Billings scores
UJ: Mackenzie Lefebvre 2 run HR, Samarah Martinez scores
BCU: Lierman 2 RBI single, Kylee Lukes, Karis Gifford score
Jimmies bounce back in game two:
The Jimmies were held to two hits but still managed to do enough to get a 4-2 win over the Chargers in the second game of the doubleheader.
The Jimmies were helped by their patience at the plate in which they worked nine walks including a bases-loaded walk in the third inning that tied the game up at one. The Jimmies leader in the category was Maddie Spaeth who went 0-for-1 with one run and three walks.
The Chargers (24-10, 8-4) opened the scoring in the second inning to take a 1-0 lead. The Jimmies (16-16, 3-7) tied the game up on the aforementioned Megan Neiles walk to make it 1-1. After the Jimmies took the lead on a sacrifice fly, they got one of their two hits when Reece Floyd hit a single through the legs of the third basemen, Aubrey Chichurka, allowing two runs to score and the Jimmies lead to go to 4-1.
The Jimmies' second hit of the game came in the fifth inning when Ally Battistoni hit a single to right. The Jimmies' starter Abby Blair kept the Chargers at bay as she pitched a complete game giving up five hits, while the two Chargers' runs were both unearned. Blair struck out two and walked three on 102 pitches.
The Jimmies' struggles to hit with runners on base continued into the second game as they hit 1-for-12 in those situations.
“It’s real simple to sit in the third base coaching box and say hey we gotta hit the ball out of the infield with runners in scoring position,” Gall said. “But it’s a little harder to do it than just the coaches telling you to do it. So, it’s back to the old thing I just said, we gotta simplify our approach and once we get a good pitch to hit we can’t try to do too much with it. We just gotta put the barrel of the bat on it. We’re trying too hard in some cases and we’re trying to be too fine with our swing.”
The Jimmies are back in action at 3 p.m. on Tuesday, April 18, when they go to Dakota Wesleyan.
BCU 2, UJ 4
BCU: 0 1 0 0 0 1 0–2 5 1
UJ: 0 0 4 0 0 0 X–4 2 2
WP: Abby Blair (6-4) LP: Katelyn Kotlarz (9-5)
BCU: Audrey Evola RBI single, Aubrey Chichurka scores
UJ: Megan Neiles bases-loaded walk, Martinez scores
UJ: Ally Battistoni RBI sacrifice fly, Maddie Spaeth scores
UJ: Reece Floyd 2 RBI single, Neiles, Sidnie Aasen score
UJ: Evola reaches on an error, Chichurka scores, unearned