Bluffton takes down Hiram and Muskingum
March 11, 2016
By: Colton Steiner, sports information assistant
KISSIMMEE, Fla. - The Bluffton University softball team opened up their final day in Florida against the Hiram College Lady Terriers. A great team effort was the key to Bluffton's 3-2 win over Hiram as the Beavers improved to 5-4 on the year while the Lady Terriers stayed winless at 0-11.
The offenses were quiet in the first two innings with the score deadlocked at 0-0. Hiram cracked the board first in the third after an RBI double gave the Terriers a 1-0 advantage.
Bluffton was then able to grab a 2-1 lead after scoring two runs in the top of the fourth inning. KELSI WILSON (Pataskala/Licking Heights) followed Brittany Huff's (Clayton/Northmont) base hit with a single through the right side. The Beavers would get on the board after an RBI single by MOLLY HABERMAN (Port Clinton) tied the game at 1-1. The visitors on the scoreboard would then take their first lead of the game when Wilson stole home. The Lady Terriers evened the score at 2-2 in the bottom of the frame.
The Beavers opened up the fifth with a one-out double by JESSIE MADZIA (Massillon/Tuslaw) to put the go-ahead run in scoring position. ABIGAIL BLAKE (Lancaster/Fairfield Union) made it 3-2 Bluffton thanks to her RBI single to right center which plated Madzia.
Madzia allowed only one hit to Hiram over the last three innings. The Beavers collected a total of 10 hits on the day, compared to Hiram’s three, en route to the 3-2 victory over the Lady Terriers.
Kelsi Wilson led Bluffton at the plate, piling up a team-high three hits to go along with one run scored. Jessie Madzia also came up big as she went 2-for-4 with Bluffton's only extra base hit of the game.
Netting a total of 84 pitches in seven innings of work, Madzia (2-1) allowed just one earned run on three hits. She notched three strikeouts while walking only two batters.
Bluffton concluded the trip to Florida as they played their final game against the Muskingum University Fighting Muskies. A solid defensive effort was key as the Beavers marched their way to a 5-0 shutout of the Fighting Muskies. The win moves Bluffton to a 6-4 overall record while Muskingum dropped to 4-6 on the season.
After two scoreless frames, the Beavers were finally able to break the ice and score two runs in the bottom of the third thanks to a two-run bomb to left center by Jessie Madzia. A scoreless fourth inning kept the score at 2-0 until the Beavers notched three runs an inning later to extend their lead to 5-0.
The fifth inning started off with ASHLEY KNIPPEN (Wapakoneta) reaching first base on a fielding error by Muskingum. Knippen would score on a JOSIE McELROY (Mt. Orab/Western Brown) sacrifice fly. With runners on first and second, Kelsi Wilson roped a double to the wall in left center that brought home both Huff and Kelsey Reeder (Galion/Northmor). The Fighting Muskies were unable to get their offense untracked as Bluffton cruised to a 5-0 victory, ending their trip to Florida on a high note with six victories in the final seven games.
Kelsi Wilson was the lone Beaver with multiple hits, going 2-for-3, along with two RBIs. She was outstanding all afternoon, raking 5-of-7 with a run scored and two RBI! Jessie Madzia notched her first home run of the season and Ashley Knippen scored twice for Bluffton.
EMILY SCUPHOLM (Cuyahoga Falls/Our Lady of the Elms) improved to 2-3 as she tossed a complete game, allowing only four hits. Needing just 108 pitches, Scupholm had a strikeout and three walks. She finished the week with a sparkling 1.19 ERA in 35.1 innings of work. Scupholm fanned 14 and tossed five complete games with one shutout!
The Beavers will be back in Ohio and take the short trip to Ohio Northern in Ada on Tuesday, March 15, with a 3:30 start time. You can follow the action on our twitter page @bluffton_sports.