Shewmaker, Supak Power Bears to 4-0 Win over Wichita State
SPRINGFIELD, Mo. -- The Missouri State softball team made a four-run first inning stand up Wednesday (April 15) evening at Killian Softball Stadium, as junior pitcher Lauren Supak blanked Wichita State for the second time this season to halt MSU’s seven-game home losing streak. Senior first baseman Jana Shewmaker’s 2-for-3 performance sparked the Bears’ offense in the 4-0 victory, with her three-run homer proving to be the key blow in the decisive inning.
The Bears wasted little time in stopping a 15-inning scoreless streak, as sophomore Jenna Schwark started the game with a leadoff single to right, then came all the way around when Ashley Arbon laid down a bunt single and WSU third baseman Lauren Coleman fired wide of the bag at first. Jessie Smith capped the string of three straight singles with a base hit to right, and after an Ashley Knehans pop-up, Shewmaker pounded a 1-2 offering from Shockers starting pitcher Kasha Kolb over the left field fence to give Supak all the run support she would need.
Supak, who shut out the Shockers, 5-0 on March 26 in Wichita, was in control throughout the night, particularly the first four frames. After allowing an infield single to Kersti Rowan to lead off the first, Supak cruised through the first four innings, using only 23 pitches to retire the next 12 batters.
Heather Gerritse and BreAnna Brown started the fifth with back-to-back singles, however, setting up the Shockers’ first real scoring threat of the evening. After a Jamie Stanclift sacrifice and a Lauren Coleman walk loaded the bases with just one out, Supak refocused to get the two biggest outs of the game. She coaxed a fly ball to right off the bat of pinch hitter Tiffany Dahlquist, then got Jessica Spencer to roll out to second on a 3-2 pitch to end the inning.
WSU put a pair of runners on base in each of the last two innings, but Supak ended both Shocker scoring threats by getting critical groundouts to keep the visitors off the scoreboard and help register the Bears’ first win at Killian Stadium since a March 8 win over Saint Louis.
In all, Supak (3-6) would allow seven hits and a pair of walks while striking out just one hitter in her fourth complete game of the season. The Colorado Springs, Colo., native lowered her earn run average to just 1.25 in MVC play.
Smith joined Shewmaker in recording two hits, as well as her 12th steal of the season, to lead MSU’s seven-hit attack.
The Bears continue their four-game home stand Saturday (April 18) when they host the Evansville Purple Aces in a Noon doubleheader. MSU and UE will square off again Sunday in a single game, also slated for a Noon first pitch at Killian Softball Stadium.