St. Catharine -- After having their opening games of the season pushed back due to weather, the Patriot softball team opened their season Friday afternoon at Salt River Electric Field against Purdue Calumet (Ind.).
The Patriots (1-1) took the opening game of the doubleheader 6-1, but then in the second game, the Peregrines battled back winning 12-1 to split the doubleheader. St. Catharine is back in action tomorrow against Calumet (Ind.) beginning at 1 p.m. ET.
Game 1: St. Catharine 6, Purdue Calumet 1
It was a rocky start for junior Tiffany Wickline (Georgetown, Ky.) in the circle. Wickline allowed a leadoff home run to open the game, but settled down and found a groove allowing the one run on six hits in six innings of work to go with four strikeouts. Brittany McKee (Somerset, Ky.) pitched a scoreless seventh to close out the win.
It didn’t take long for the Patriots to answer the home run as they scored five runs in the bottom half of the first. A hit by pitch, an error and a walk loaded the bases for Sara Bibb (Louisville, Ky.). Bibb took one off the arm to force home a run tying the game at 1-1.
Jennifer Ortega (Delano, Calif.) then reached on an error to score one, then a passed ball allowed Kelsey Gravens (Mt. Washington, Ky.) to score from third. McKee made the score 5-1 after the first when she delivered a two-run double to score a pair.
From that point on the game turned into a pitchers’ duel until the bottom of the third when the Patriots plated one run on one hit and a crucial error. Brittany McKee was back at it when she singled home a run making the score 6-1.
The five run cushion was more than enough for Wickline and McKee. McKee led the way at the plate with two hits and three RBI’s. Four other Patriots recorded a hit, while Bibb and Ortega also had one RBI each.
Game 2: St. Catharine 1, Purdue Calumet 12
The nightcap didn’t go so well for the Patriots as the Peregrines (1-1) battered the Patriot pitchers for 12 runs on 12 hits. Jennifer Ortega took the loss allowing four runs – three earned – on four hits in three innings of work. Lexi Fugate (Bedford, Ind.) and Casey Grant (Fort Mitchell, Ky.) pitched the final four innings allowing two earned runs on eight hits.
Purdue Calumet plated two runs in the first, third and fourth innings before the Patriots got on the scoreboard in the fourth. Sara Bibb led the inning off with a double and advanced to third on a passed ball. Two batters later, Carly Benz (Brooks, Ky.) grounded out, plating the lone run for the Patriots.
The Peregrines plated six more runs in the seventh pushing the final score out to 12-1. The Patriots struggled to get their offense going against Holly Pagan. Pagan pitched the full six innings allowing one unearned run on six hits.
Sara Bibb led the way at the plate going 2-for-3 with a run scored. Carly Benz went 1-for-3 at the dish driving in the lone run for the Patriots.