The Case Western Reserve University softball team picked up a pair of wins on Sunday afternoon in Ada, Ohio, coming from behind twice to defeat Ohio Northern College 3-2 in the first game of the day, before the offense erupted in a 10-3 win over the Polar Bears in the late contest.
The Spartans improved to 9-13 this season with the two wins, while Ohio Northern dropped to 9-7 overall.
Game 1: CWRU 3, ONU 2
Case Western Reserve junior Annie Wennerberg allowed just two hits and a pair of unearned runs, as the Spartans overcame a one-run deficit on two occasions to score a 3-2 win over Ohio Northern in the first game of Sunday's doubleheader.
Wennerberg struck out four and walked just three during the impressive effort, retiring the final seven batters she faced in the game and earning the win to improve to 5-7 on the year.
The Spartans tried to strike first in the game, loading the bases with one out in the top of the first inning, but could not get a run across. In the bottom of the inning, a one-out error allowed a run to score, and gave the Polar Bears a 1-0 lead.
The score remained 1-0 until the top of the fourth, when base hits from senior catcher Meghann McMahon and sophomore second baseman Lindsey Robinson, and a walk to freshman shortstop Nicole Doyle loaded the bases with two outs. With sophomore center fielder Katie Wede at the plate, Ohio Northern's Kirsten Lightel threw a wild pitch, allowing the tying run to score from third.
The Polar Bears took advantage of two more Spartan errors in the bottom of the fourth to regain the lead, 2-1. However, Wennerberg was able to limit the damage in the inning, getting a key third out in the inning to leave the bases loaded for Ohio Northern.
Wennerberg would lead the fifth off with a walk, and steal second base to get into scoring position. A single and a stolen base from sophomore Grace Tritchler put the potential tying and go-ahead runs in scoring position, but sophomore third baseman Maren Waldner lined out to short, and Wennerberg was thrown out at the plate trying to score on a fly out to centerfield, ending the Spartan threat.
Wennerberg sat the ONU side down in order in the bottom of the fifth, keeping the score at 2-1. Case Western Reserve would even the score again with one out in the top of the sixth, when a passed ball with runners on the corners scored senior right fielder Kristen Klemmer, and allowed Robinson to advance to third, representing the go-ahead run. Doyle would then walk and steal second, with Robinson scoring from third on the throw, giving CWRU its first lead of the game, 3-2.
Case Western Reserve maintained its one-run lead going into the bottom of the seventh. An error, a walk and a passed ball of a strikeout would load the bases for the Polar Bears against Spartans' sophomore reliever Katie Dzierwa with nobody out in the inning. However, Dzierwa would strike out the next two batters, and end the game on a groundout to earn the save, her second of the season.
The Spartans out-hit the Polar Bears 8-2 in the game, including a three-for-four game at the plate for McMahon, and a two-for-three performance for Tritchler.
Paige Ordean was credited with the loss in relief for Ohio Northern, falling to 0-1 on the year.
Game 2: CWRU 10, ONU 3
Case Western Reserve collected a season-high 19 hits, en route to a 10-3 win over Ohio Northern in the late game to complete the sweep of the Polar Bears.
The Spartans were able to cash in a run in the top of the first inning when a two-out double from Tritchler scored Robinson for the first run of the game. In the second inning, Wede scored on a wild pitch to begin a two-out rally for CWRU. Waldner added a run on an RBI single, and then Tritchler picked up her second double of the game, driving in Robinson and Waldner to extend the lead to 5-0. An RBI double from Wennerberg capped off the five-run second inning for the Spartans, giving the team a 6-0 lead after two. In the third, an RBI single from Robinson scored freshman designated player Alex Favazza with two outs, pushing the Spartans' lead to seven runs.
Meanwhile, CWRU starter Rebecca Molnar kept the Polar Bears without a hit until the bottom of the fourth inning. She left the game after four innings, allowing just one hit and a walk, while striking out a batter.
Klemmer extended the lead to 8-0 on a two-out RBI single in the top of the sixth, before the Polar Bears finally got on the board in the bottom of the inning on a three-run home run by Hailee Loughman. The Spartans capped off their scoring with a pair in the top of the seventh, including a run on a two-out RBI hit from Wennerberg.
Robinson finished the second game five-for-five at the plate with three runs scored and an RBI, while Tritchler went three-for-five with two runs, three RBIs and a pair of doubles. Wede added a three-for-four game at the playe with a run and a double.
Molnar earned the win in the game, improving to 3-3 on the season, while Ohio Northern starter Kaitlin Surdej took the loss, falling to 3-4.
The Spartans are scheduled to be back in action this week, when the team travels to the University of Mount Union on Wednesday, March 23rd for a mid-week doubleheader. The first pitch on Wednesday is scheduled for 3:00 p.m.