Wildcat softball takes home first sweep of the year

WSC’s bats come alive to help the team gain NSIC wins


Zach Halsey

Senior Monique Alyea hits against the Peacocks in Tuesday’s “Fill the Hill” game. Alyea went 6 for 7 on the day with two RBIs. WSC wore teal jerseys for the games to raise awareness for Sexual Assault month.

Shawn Henley, Staff Writer

Wayne State College softball brought out the brooms for the first time this year and swept NSIC opponent MSU Moorhead 8-7 and 5-1 last Friday in Moorhead, Minn.
“They fought really hard against Moorhead,” Head Coach Shelli Manson said. “It felt great to get those wins on the road.”
WSC got on the board first in game one when junior Rachel Shumaker hit an RBI triple and scored off sophomore Abbie Hix’s RBI single to take the lead, 2-0. In the third inning, senior Monique Alyea hit a lead-off home run to extend the lead to 3-0.
Moorhead tied the game at 3-3 with a three-run third inning and then took the lead 4-3 in the fourth. The second home run of the game for the ‘Cats came in the fifth as junior Jordyn Breitbarth hit a two-run homer to left field to regain the lead, 5-4.
The Dragons once again took the lead 7-5 heading into the seventh. WSC started off the seventh with hits by senior Melanie Alyea, Monique Alyea and Breitbarth. Hix reached base on a throwing error, scoring both Alyea sisters. Senior Alyssa Schropp scored Hix on a sacrifice fly and the ‘Cats held on for the victory.
In game two, Shumaker got the ‘Cats on the board with RBI singles in the fourth and fifth innings. Junior Katelyn Wobken blasted a three-run homer in the sixth to seal the fate for the Dragons.
“They really did have a never-give-up attitude in both games,” Manson said.
WSC was also in action last Tuesday, splitting a double header against the University of Sioux Falls in Sioux Falls, S.D. The ‘Cats racked up 19 hits, the most in a game since April 14, 2015, against Sioux Falls, and held on to win 7-5.
“They were really fired up to play USF,” Manson said. I was very pleased with our offense, defense and pitching. What was really great was our hitting. It’s what got us the win.”

After the first three and a half innings, WSC got out to a 5-0 lead. Brietbarth scored on a sacrifice fly, Melanie Alyea on a two-run RBI double, and freshman Blair Shanks and Monique Alyea both had RBI singles in the third inning.

The Cougars got back in the game with a four-run third inning and cut the lead to 5-4. Melanie Alyea iced the game for WSC with another two-run double in the fifth. Sioux Falls had a chance to win the game in the seventh, but junior pitcher Nataliah Hopkins got out of the jam and the ‘Cats held on for the win.

USF came out strong in game two, scoring three runs in the bottom of the sixth to hold on for the 5-2 victory.

The game was 1-0 in the third when Monique Alyea hit an RBI single to centerfield, scoring Wobken, who was hit by a pitch earlier in the inning. WSC took the lead 2-1 in the fifth as Melanie Alyea and Shumaker both doubled, with Alyea scoring the run.

The Cougars tied the game 2-2 in the fifth and then rattled off three runs in the sixth to hold on for the 5-2 win.

Last Saturday, WSC was swept by Northern State 9-8 and 10-2 in an NSIC conference doubleheader in Aberdeen, S.D.

WSC started off game one hot with a solo homer by Monique Alyea and a two-run homer by Breitbarth. In the fourth, the ‘Cats extended to the lead 7-4 as freshman Jenna Stewart had an RBI single and was followed by a three-run homer by Wobken.

Northern State put on the rally caps in the fifth inning, scoring five runs to go up 9-7. Melanie Alyea singled and scored Monique Alyea, but it was not enough for the win.

“We felt pretty good heading into the fifth inning,” Manson said. “They had some timely hits and our defense let us down a couple of times.”

In game two, the Wolves scored runs in every inning of play to hold on for the sweep. The only WSC runs came in the fourth as Breitbarth doubled and scored off an NSU fielding error.

“It was a tough loss,” Manson said. “Just another example of how we need to stay sharp the entire game.”

After last Tuesday’s games and this past weekend, WSC is now 10-32 overall and 4-14 in NSIC play.

Yesterday the ’Cats faced off against Upper Iowa University, where WSC took the split. Sophomore Riley Vandereen took the 8-5 win for the first game after throwing five solid innings.

In the next game, the Wildcat’s bats fell silent, scoring no runs off of only six hits. Hopkins suffered the pitching loss, despite throwing a complete game and only giving up six hits.

WSC is back on the road Saturday and Sunday for NSIC doubleheaders against Bemidji State and Minnesota Crookston.