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Sisters help WSC softball in doubleheader

Shawn Henley, Staff Writer

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Wayne State College senior softball sisters Melanie and Monique Alyea combined to go 6 for 7 hitting en route to an 8-5 win in game one of the doubleheader at home against Upper Iowa last Tuesday.

“It’s really great when you get to see the kids exceed, especially Monique,” Head Coach Shelli Manson said. “She has been rock solid all year and has been the most versatile athlete on our team.”

WSC got off to a hot start in game one against the Peacocks, going up 8-0 after the first three innings. Monique Alyea, junior Jordyn Breitbarth and junior Rachel Shumaker got the ’Cats off to a 4-0 lead after the first inning, each with RBI singles.

Wayne added another run in the second inning to go up 5-0. In the third, WSC tacked on two more runs courtesy of the two sisters’ RBI singles.

Upper Iowa made the rest of the game a challenge for the ’Cats, as the Peacocks scored two runs in the fourth, three in the seventh and had the game-tying run at the plate as WSC escaped with the victory.

Monique went 4 for 4 with two RBI’s in game one. Melanie went 2 for 3 with an RBI single, junior Katelyn Wobken went 2 for 4 with two runs scored and sophomore Abbie Hix had two singles.

“She (Monique) has played three positions this year, along with hitting in the two spot most of the year,” Manson said. “She’s really put the team first and her success is something she worked very hard to earn.”

Sophomore Riley Vanderveen pitched five strong innings, allowing two runs on five hits. Junior Nataliah Hopkins pitched the final two innings and allowed three runs on seven hits.

“Riley was really good as well,” Manson said. “She got into trouble more than once and got herself out of it.”

Game two against Upper Iowa was not what the ‘Cats had in mind, as the Peacocks shut out WSC 3-0. UIU scored its runs in the second, third and fifth innings.

WSC had three hits in the first inning, but did not convert them to runs. Monique Alyea and Shumaker went 2 for 3 with a pair of singles. Wobken, Hix and freshman Jenna Stewart each had singles.

“We hit some very hard shots in the second game and just couldn’t get them to fall,” Manson said. “I can’t ask any more from the girls than to have a good at bat and hit it hard. They did that, but this game unfortunately didn’t fall our way.”

Saturday’s doubleheader at Bemidji State did not go WSC’s way as the Beavers swept the ’Cats 3-1 and 5-1.

WSC had only three hits in game one and scored its only run in the fourth inning as Breitbarth scored on a Shumaker double down the left field line. The 1-0 lead lasted up to the sixth, as the Beavers got three runs off Vanderveen and held on for the victory.

“The sixth inning against Bemidji, our defense had a hiccup, and they capitalized on it,” Manson said. “Riley really pitched great, but when you’re facing a good team, one little mistake can be deadly for us, and it was.”

In game two, WSC had chances to score in the fourth and fifth innings, but scored its lone run in the sixth as the Beavers held on for the sweep.

“Game two was certainly frustrating,” Manson said. “They worked hard, kept their energy high, but we couldn’t capitalize.”

Breitbarth scored the only run of the game off Shumaker’s double. Monique Alyea went 3 of 4 with a double, Wobken went 2 of 4 and Melanie Alyea, Breitbarth and freshman Sarah Hunter each had singles.

After the weekend, WSC is now 11-35 overall and 5-17 in NSIC play. The Beavers improved to 22-15 overall and 12-10 in NSIC play.

WSC returns to play Thursday against Southwest Minnesota State at the Pete Chapman Complex at 2 p.m. and 4 p.m.

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Sisters help WSC softball in doubleheader