Luke Dechant, Sports Information Director
WICHITA – The Friends University Softball team started the 2017 KCAC schedule with a doubleheader sweep of McPherson College Wednesday afternoon at TRYC. The Falcons overcame strong starting pitching with a stellar start of their own in Game One and run-ruled the visitors in Game Two.
GAME ONE FINAL: (RV) FRIENDS 4, MCPHERSON 0:
McPherson recorded the only hit of the first three innings, an infield single in the 2nd, but stranded the runner on first. The Falcons finally got their first hit in the 4th, also a single, and they would not take advantage either as the teams remained scoreless through four.
Friends (19-5, 2-0 KCAC) broke the contest open with the only runs of the first game in the 5th. Moriah Kayhill (JR/Wellsville, Kan.) led it off with a bunt single, and after a pop out, scored on a double by Laykyn Lindsay (SR/Wichita, Kan.). Lindsay was able to move up to third on the Bulldog fielder’s error, and she would make it 2-0 on a squeeze play by Kennedy Brunson (JR/Garden City, Kan.). McPherson (14-14, 0-2 KCAC) got their second out on a fly out, but Brunson stole second, Casady Marlnee (SO/Augusta, Kan.) walked, and Lacey Hudson (SR/Enid, Okla.) doubled to bring them both home for the 4-0 final.
The Bulldogs got a single in each of the last two innings, but couldn’t get on the scoreboard.
Falcon starter Heather Breslin (JR/Anchorage, Alas.) pitched a complete game shutout, allowing just three hits with no walks on just 52 pitches to improve to 7-1.
Hudson led the offensive charge with a 2-for-2 game with two RBIs.
GAME TWO FINAL: (RV) FRIENDS 9, MCPHERSON 1 (FIVE INNINGS):
Friends scored a two-out run in the first to get things started, with Brunson doubling and Sara Gonzalez (SR/Granada Hills, Okla.) plating her with a single. The Bulldogs tied it up in the next half inning with a solo home run though.
The Falcons wasted no time going back in front for good, however, scoring twice in the bottom of the 2nd. Kailey Jenkins (SR/Wellington, Kan.) led off the inning with a single, and Kayhill followed with a perfect bunt that gave Friends two runners on. A sacrifice bunt moved both of them up, and Lindsay made it 3-1 with a double to left-center.
Friends scored twice more in the 3rd before an out was recorded. Hudson singled and S. Gonzalez and Marlnee both doubled for a 5-1 advantage.
Three more runs crossed the plate for the Falcons in the 4th as they smelled the mercy-rule win. Brunson started the inning by reaching on a McPherson error, Vanessa Oakden(SR/Clackamas, Ore.) followed with a double for one run and Hudson brought her home with a triple down the right field line. After a walk and two outs, Hudson scored after the Bulldogs had trouble catching an attempted pick-off play.
Friends ended the game in the bottom of the 5th, with Hudson once again coming through with the hit that scored the run.
Hudson went 3-for-3 with two runs scored and two RBI’s, giving her a perfect 5-for-5 day and raising her batting average on the season to .530, ranking her No. 9 in the country at this point.
The Falcons pounded out 12 hits in just 25 at bats for the game.
Starter Maci Walker (JR/Terrell, Texas) allowed just three hits and one earned run in getting the complete game win. She struck out two and walked none in upping her season record to 6-2.
Friends continues KCAC play on Saturday, Mar. 25, when they host Ottawa in a doubleheader starting at 1 pm.