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Kenyon takes game two, earns split with Oberlin

GAMBIER, Ohio — After being held to three hits in 2-1 game-one loss during Sunday’s doubleheader with Oberlin College, the Kenyon College softball team bounced back in game two, winning 8-3 to split the conference twinbill on home turf.

Both teams struggled in generating offense in the first game of the day. After Oberlin plated an unearned run in the top of the third, the host Owls did the same in the bottom of the inning. Maddie Friday got on base via an Oberlin error. She moved to second on the play and got to third following a sacrifice from Sophia Lynch. Two batters later, a groundout from Natalya Delsante got Friday home with the tying run.

In the fifth, Oberlin logged the game’s only earned run, which proved to be the game-winner. A leadoff double from Kailey Dunham got things going for the Yeowomen. A sacrifice bunt and a sacrifice fly pushed Durham around the bases to seal the Oberlin win.

Oberlin pitcher Hailey Alspach earned the victory after she threw seven innings and allowed just three hits. She struck out five and didn’t give up an earned run or a walk. Her counterpart, Kenyon’s Kylie Hamm, also went seven innings without yielding a walk. Hamm fanned one and yielded one earned run on seven hits.

In game two, a combination of good offense and sloppy defense put a lot more crooked numbers on the scoreboard.

The key inning was the second, in which Kenyon was able to post five runs, needing just a couple of hits to do so. Maeve McLaughlin and Brooke Avila started things after both getting hit by a pitch. Two batters and one out later, Amanda Harris hit a ground ball to second that was not fielded cleanly. McLaughlin came around to score and when the throw came to the plate, Harris broke for second base. The Yeowomen then threw back to second in an attempt to get Harris, but that only gave Avila time to come home, giving Kenyon a 2-0 lead.

Later in the inning, Harris stole third base and Delsante walked. Those two base runners then pulled off a successful double steal. Following that, Arianna Jalomo doubled to the wall in left field, scoring Delsante. The next batter, Keala Montgomery, singled off the pitcher’s glove and allowed Jamolo to advance two bases, giving Kenyon a 5-0 cushion.

Oberlin answered with single runs in the third and fourth innings, but Kenyon fired back with one in the fourth and two more in the fifth to pull ahead 8-2. The run in the fourth was due to an Oberlin error and the two in the fifth came off RBI hits from Harris and Delsante.

After being held hitless in game one, Montgomery was 3-for-4 with a triple and an RBI in game two. Delsante, also hitless in game one, was 2-for-3 with a run and an RBI in game two. Harris scored twice in that second game, as did McLaughlin.

Hamm (9-6) went six innings in game two to pick up the pitching win. She gave up two runs on 10 hits and struck out two. Allison McCutchen then came on to finish things off in the seventh.

The split put Kenyon at 14-14 overall and 1-5 in conference play, while Oberlin moved to 4-20 overall and 1-7 in the conference.

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