COLUMBUS, Ohio - The home field advantage continued for Ohio Dominican's softball team Sunday afternoon as the Panthers notched their fourth straight sweep with dominating efforts of 6-0 and 10-6 against visiting Saginaw Valley State (Mich.).
With the sweep, ODU remained atop the GLIAC standings with the only unblemished record in conference play at 6-0, and moved two games above .500 for the first time this year at 12-10. The Panthers concluded the homestand a perfect 8-0, matching their longest win streak since April 2006, and are now just five shy from tying the program record for consecutive home wins of 13 set back in 2005.
Saginaw Valley, the NFCA preseason No. 4 and a 2011 NCAA Division II World Series participant, fell to 9-11 overall and 2-4 in the conference.
For the seventh time in eight games, ODU sent runs across within the first two innings of a contest as the Panthers jumped on the Cardinals early with a two-run first inning in the opener. Junior Brooke McCartney (Salem, OH) led off with a double down the left field line and following two SVSU outs, senior Kylee Crislip (Louisville, OH) lined a shot that just cleared the centerfield fence for her fourth homerun of the year.
ODU padded the lead with two more runs in both the fifth and sixth frames. Crislip went deep again with a two-run blast to left center in the fifth, scoring freshman Kelsey Seeds (Westerville, OH). It was the second multi-homerun game of her career after recording two solo shots back on March 30, 2010. In the sixth, back-to-back-to-back doubles by sophomores Rebekha Lucas (Laurelville, OH) and Danyelle Delligatta (Sidney, OH), and McCartney plated the Panthers' final two scores.
On the rubber, freshman Rachael Stanzel (Angleton, OH) sparkled once again, throwing a one-hit shutout for her fifth straight win. Stanzel matched her season high with nine strikeouts as she went the distance for the 11th time this year and improved to 8-4 overall.
The Panthers opened the scoring again in the nightcap as senior Erin Sutter (Mansfield, OH) singled home sophomore Brittany Seavey (Flint, MI) in the second with a base knock to left, and came around to score on Delligatta's double to left center.
A two-run homer to left by SVSU tied the score at 2-2, but a seven-hit, eight-run explosion by ODU in the third put the game out of reach. Senior Caitlin Chaney (Newark, OH) got the scoring started with her first round-tripper of the year, a one-out, solo shot to right center. Following a single to right center by Seeds and a walk by Crislip, Sutter and freshman Alex Cribari (Lyndhurst, OH) both recorded RBI singles and sophomore Caitlin Jividen (Wheeling, WV) stole home as part of a perfectly executed double steal. Red-shirt freshman Kendall Lust (Marion, OH) induced a walk and McCartney, up for the second time in the inning, then cleared the bases with three-run double to left center for the 10-2 margin.
The Cardinals added three in the fourth with a three-run homerun down the left field line and one in the seventh on an RBI single to left center for the final tally.
Lust collected her fourth win in a row in the circle, allowing the six runs on nine hits, while striking out three and walking none in the 64-pitch, complete-game effort.
Crislip finished the afternoon 3-of-4 with the two longs balls, four RBI, three walks and three runs scored for a slugging percentage of 2.250 and on-base percentage of .857. Delligatta was 3-of-5 with two doubles and two runs; Sutter went 4-of-7 with two RBI and two runs; and McCartney ended the day 3-of-7 with a trio of doubles, four RBI and a pair of runs scored.
ODU takes to the road this Wednesday, March 28 for a 3 p.m. non-conference doubleheader clash against Northern Kentucky. For the latest updates on the Panthers and Ohio Dominican Athletics, be sure to visit our website, www.ohiodominicanpanthers.com.
Contact: Bryan Desch