Softball Bears Sweep MVC Doublheader Against Bradley
Missouri State won both games of an MVC doubleaher against Bradley Saturday, at the MSU Softball Field. The softball Bears won the opener 2-1 and crushed the Braves 12-4 in the second contest to improve to 18-11 overall and 7-6 in Valley action.
Junior shortstop Jessie Smith enjoyed a huge day for the Bears at the plate, going 5-for-8 with six RBIs and two runs scored. Smith’s single to center scored freshman Tyler Porter in the opening frame of the first game to give the Bears a 1-0 lead. Bradley’s Amanda Clack homored in the third to tie the game at 1-1. Senior Michelle Armentrout’s single in the fifth scored Smith, who reached base on a Bradley error, for the final 2-1 margin.
Senior Melissa Porche (10-8) pitched her 13th complete game of the season in the opener, striking out 12 Bradley batters and yielding just three hits.
Missouri State took advantage of two Bradley errors in second inning of game two, scoring four runs on four hits. Senior Lacie Ballard, who went 2-for-3 at the plate with three RBIs and two runs scored for the game, singled home junior Jana Shewmaker for the Bears’ first run. Porche added a two RBI single to center and Smith added another RBI single to center to give MSU a 4-0 cushion.
Ballard and Smith both knocked in a pair of runs in MSU’s six-run third inning. Ballard’s single to center scored the first two runs of the frame, followed by freshman Ashley Knehan’s RBI single to right. Smith’s triple to left banged high off of the fence and was the first of her two consecutive triples. Armentrout doubled to left center for the seventh MSU hit and sixth RBI of the inning.
Bradley scored four runs in the fourth to chase Bears’ sophomore starter Lauren McGinley, who improved to 6-2. Porche, who pitched the final two outs of the fourth and a scoreless fifth, was 2-for-3 at the plate with two RBIs and three runs scored. Smith’s second two RBI triple in the fifth ended the shortened run-rule contest and accounted for the final 12-4 margin.
Missouri State will host Bradley in a single game, Sunday (April 6), at 12 p.m. at the MSU Softball Field.