GVSU softball picks up two road wins against No. 15 Wayne State

Softball vs SVSU on Sunday March 25th, 2018. GVL / Archive

Emily Frye

Softball vs SVSU on Sunday March 25th, 2018. GVL / Archive

Kellen Voss

The No. 8 ranked Grand Valley State women’s softball team continued their dominant 2019 campaign this weekend, defeating No. 15 Wayne State twice in Detroit, winning the first game 5-0 and the second game 11-2.

Senior pitcher Allison Lipovsky added yet another brilliant performance to her lengthy pitching resume in the first game of the doubleheader, going all seven innings for the Lakers while only allowing two hits and two walks and striking out ten Warriors in the contest.

“She always sets up for that second game, you get that confidence rolling and it gets everybody on the same page,” said head coach Dana Callahan. “She’s doing a really great job, the defense behind her is doing well and we’re putting runs on the board so were putting things all together.”

Second basemen Taylor Rieger led all Laker batters in the first game, using her four at-bats to amass three RBI and one run scored off three hits, including a home run down the left field line in the seventh inning to seal the victory for GVSU.

First baseman Kelcie LaTour and catcher Morgan Wagner recorded the other two RBI in the game, using a single from LaTour and a flyout from Wagner to drive home Nikola Holmen and Brooke Henning.

Callahan stressed the importance of this team putting runs on the board in the first few innings, as it allows a nice cushion for the team which can then lead to an easy victory.

“We got our bats going early and we were able to string it together when we needed to,” Callahan said. “The pitchers did a nice job of keeping runners off the bases, and we really put things all together as a team.”

In the second game, freshman Samantha Gehrls had a solid five inning outing on the mound, getting three strikeouts while only allowing five hits and one earned run. Fellow freshman Hannah Dieck secured the save for the Lakers, allowing only one hit in her one inning of relief.

The Laker offense was headlined by LaTour, who homered to amass two RBI while also being walked three times, and Lydia Goble, who totaled three RBI on a key double for the Lakers. Henning, Kaylie Rhynard and Shannon Flaherty also earned hits in the contest. 

As evidenced by all the names listed above, the Lakers have a balanced offensive attack and have some skilled base runners, where multiple bats can go off in a single outing, which Callahan loves about this team.

“It was really spread out, and we had some great base running,” Callahan said. “Across the board, it’s hard to pinpoint one player’s success when it was a true team effort.”

After the doubleheader, the Lakers boast an 18-2 overall record, as well as a 2-0 record in the GLIAC. With home doubleheaders this week against Wisconsin Parkside, Purdue Northwest and Davenport, GVSU has six more opportunities to both improve as a team and to better their records.

“I still think our offense can fire a little more from top to bottom,” Callahan said. “We’re getting hits when we need it, but we need everybody to fire on all cylinders. There’s still times where we can pound that open a little more. The pitching and defense is phenomenal, but when the hitting is there, we are a more complete team.”

GVSU will face Wisconsin Parkside on Wednesday, March 27, at 3:30 p.m. and 5:30 p.m. before heading into the weekend doubleheader, where they’ll face Purdue Northwest on Saturday, March 30 at 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. and then Ferris State the following day at 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. All games will take place at the GVSU Softball Field.