Laker softball sweeps doubleheader with 45 runs

GVL / Eric Coulter
Briauna Taylor prepares to swing at a pitch from Rochester College

Eric Coulter

GVL / Eric Coulter Briauna Taylor prepares to swing at a pitch from Rochester College

Zach Sepanik

The No. 15-ranked Grand Valley State University softball team made a little history on Tuesday, crossing home plate 45 times in a doubleheader against Rochester College, the most runs scored by the Lakers in a doubleheader since 1975.

In game one GVSU dominated 21-0, while in game two they claimed a 24-0 victory. The Lakers (17-3) collected 40 hits in the two games, while holding the Warriors (1-11) to a mere three, all of which were singles.

“I don’t care who you play, when you can get some hits, that helps your confidence,” said GVSU head coach Doug Woods. “It was nice to get everybody in and everybody contributed. We are hoping that helps us going into league play this weekend.”

Junior pitcher Hannah Santora started things off for the Lakers by shutting down Rochester in order the first three innings of game one. She retired all nine batters she faced and struck out six, earning the victory and pushing her record to 7-1. She was relieved by freshman Sarah Wyse, who made her Laker pitching debut.

Offensively, junior second baseman Kayleigh Bertram paced the Lakers with three hits, three runs scored and two RBI.

“I struggled a little bit for a few games and then I just worked on getting myself focused again, staying true to my own form, and just played my game,” Bertram said. “I know what I can do and I did what I could today.”

Sophomore third baseman Miranda Cleary and junior catcher Emily Holt each led GVSU with three RBI, also chipping in two hits apiece.

Four other Lakers also contributed multi-hit games in the opener of the twinbill, including junior center fielder Nellie Kosola who led the Lakers with three runs scored.

“Sometimes when you play those weaker teams, it is hard to keep that focus and play at your level and not down to their level,” said senior pitcher Andrea Nicholson. “In that sense, I think we were successful for sure.”

Regardless of how many runs the Lakers would score in game two, sophomore pitcher Kayla Hurd made it hard pressed for the Warriors to even earn a hit. She allowed one hit in the first inning, but then settled in and recorded a career-high 10 strikeouts.

Another strong pitching performance by a member of the Lakers pitching staff was supported by another dominant hitting performance from the Laker hitters.

Junior infielder Maggie Kopas had a career game, going 4-for-4 with a double, a run scored and two RBI. Meanwhile, Kosola and sophomore shortstop Briauna Taylor each had three hits, two runs scored and two RBI. Junior designated hitter Katie Martin led the Lakers with four runs scored, while Bertram also had a multi-hit game.

To complete the historic day, senior catcher Carli Raisutis and her replacement, junior catcher KC Christopher, each knocked in three runs to highlight an all-around team effort.

“It is a definite confidence booster to go into this weekend,” Bertram said. “We have a pretty big weekend coming up. To go into those six games, it is really good to know that we can hit like we did last year and know that we can stay focused.”

GVSU opens up GLIAC play this weekend with three road doubleheaders. The Lakers head to Tiffin University on Friday, travel to Wayne State University on Saturday and close out the trip Sunday at Findlay University.

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