Grant Cohen, Communications Student Assistant
MEMPHIS, Tenn. – The Wichita State softball team came up with its first conference series sweep of the season after dominating the Memphis Lady Tigers 15-3 in a run-rule effort on Sunday afternoon.
Wichita State put up at least one run in the five-inning outing, marking the first time the Shockers scored in every inning since March 6, 2014, where the Shockers scored in all five innings of a run-rule game against UMKC.
Kaylee Huecker led the team with four RBIs, coming up with her second home run of the season off a grand slam in the top of the first. The Shockers had six different players collect hits while having seven different players drive in runs. Erin McDonald picked up her 10th win of the season, with Caitlin Bingham striking out three of the seven batters she faced.
The Shockers started the game by drawing five walks to bring in the first two runs of the game, with Huecker coming up with the grand slam to clear the bases and give the Shockers a six-run lead. Memphis responded with an RBI double following a leadoff walk and a sacrifice bunt, cutting the Shocker lead 6-1 after the first inning.
After drawing two more walks and advancing in scoring position off a fielder’s choice, a Memphis error scored the seventh run of the game for Wichita State in the top of the second inning. Adi Reese drew another walk in the top of the third and scored off a single up the middle by Sydney McKinney after the sacrifice bunt.
Another throwing error by Memphis extended the Wichita State lead to eight, with Laurie Derrico coming up with a single up the middle to push the Shockers in front 10-1. Bailee Nickerson followed up with an RBI single to make it a 10-run game, but a single and home run by Memphis cut the Shockers’ down to eight.
The Shockers responded in the top of the fourth with a two-out rally, putting two runners on after a Wylie Glover walk and McKinney single. Following another walk drawn by Ryleigh Buck, Madison Perrigan cleared the bases with a three-RBI double to give the Shockers an 11-run lead.
Bingham forced two strikeouts and a fly out to end the bottom of the fourth, with Neleigh Herring giving the Shockers a run for the fifth straight inning off a solo home run in the pinch hitter spot. McKinney came up with her second straight game of collecting two or more hits, coming up with her 11th multi-hit game of the season.
In addition to picking up its first conference sweep of the season, the sweep marked the first time the Shockers swept a conference and three game road series since March 29-31 when they swept UConn in Storrs, CT. last season.
Wichita State (26-19, 7-5) has now won five straight conference games and looks to keep its streak alive on Thursday against ECU at Wilkins Stadium.