Emporia State Sports
EMPORIA – The Emporia State softball team split a double header with Pittsburg State on Friday to wrap up their MIAA opening weekend. The Hornets dropped game one 4-3 and picked up a 5-3 win in game two to improve to 16-12 on the season and 3-1 in the MIAA.
Pittsburg State took advantage of two Hornet errors in the first inning of game one, taking an early 2-0 lead. Emporia State scored a single run in the bottom of the first on a Caitlin VanVleck solo home run, closing the gap 2-1. The Gorillas scored one run in both the second and third innings to take a 4-1 lead. The Hornets did not score again until Danielle Sprinkle singled through the right side to score VanVleck in the bottom of the sixth, bringing Emporia State within two at 4-2. The Hornets attempted to rally in the bottom of the seventh, having the bases loaded twice and bringing in a run when Katie Yoakum was hit by a pitch on a bases loaded situation. Emporia State fell 4-3, committing two errors and being out-hit nine to six. Holly Hinkel pitched a complete game with four walks and a strikeout to fall to 5-5 on the season. VanVleck hit two for four with two runs.
The Gorillas scored a single run in the top of the first but was answered with four Hornet runs in the bottom of the inning in game two. Sarah Glass hit an infield single to score VanVleck and tie the game 1-1. Jacie Stephens hit a two RBI single through the left side to give the Hornets a 3-1 advantage. Stephens later scored on a Pittsburg State error to put the Hornets up 4-1. The Gorillas scored a run in the second and third to make the game 4-3, the Hornets ahead. Eryn Stockman scored on a passed ball in the bottom of the sixth to give Emporia State a 5-3 cushion lead. Stockman allowed no hits in the top of the seventh to finalize the win. Stockman pitched a complete game, allowing just seven hits with two walks and a strikeout. VanVleck led again, hitting two for three.
The Hornets will travel to Wichita, Kan. to face Newman in a non-conference match-up on Friday, March 17. The first pitch of the double header will be at 4:00 p.m. at the Newman Softball Field.