Beavers sweep Manchester with mercy-rule victories
April 26, 2017
BLUFFTON, Ohio - A sunny home finale against Manchester University proved to be the perfect elixir for a Bluffton University softball team that has struggled to generate any offense in Heartland Conference play this season. The Beavers took game 1 by an 11-1 count in five innings before scoring eight runs in the second inning of game two to wrap up the sweep that took just nine innings to complete. Bluffton improved to 20-13 overall and 5-8 in the Heartland Conference, while Manchester slipped to 13-21-1 and 3-9 in the HCAC.
Senior stalwart Emily Scupholm (Cuyahoga Falls/Our Lady of the Elms) worked around a bases-loaded jam with no outs in the first and the Bluffton bats rewarded her with five unearned tallies in the bottom of the frame. Josie McElroy (Mt. Orab/Western Brown) doubled home Jessie Madzia (Massillon/Tuslaw) before Caylin Morstadt (Delaware/Rutherford B. Hayes) delivered with a three-run laser over the wall in in left field. Carly Levindofske (Brunswick/Magnificat) capped the five-run inning with an RBI double down the left field line.
McElroy was back at it with a two-run single an inning later. A bases-loaded walk to Kelsi Wilson (Pataskala/Licking Heights) made it 8-0 before Makenzie Schmidt (Caledonia/River Valley) plated Chelsea Zoltowski (Sylvania/Southview) for a nine-run spread after just two innings.
Levindofske and Wilson crossed the dish in the fourth when Kelsey Reeder (Galion/Northmor) reached on a Manchester error, making it 11-0. Back-to-back hits by the Spartans in the fifth made it 11-1, but Scupholm induced a groundout to third, ending the game after four and a half innings.
Scupholm improved to 11-6 with the complete-game five hitter. She struck out three and walked five while allowing just one run.
Josie McElroy, who broke the career doubles mark with numbers 40 and 41 at Capital on Sunday, went 3-of-3 with three RBI and two runs scored. Morstadt was 2-of-3 with the three-run homer. Levindofske chipped in with two hits, while Madzia and Wilson scored two runs each.
The home team scored in just one inning in game two but an eight-run second was enough for the Beavers to complete the mercy-rule sweep.
McElroy's shot to lead off the second marked career dinger number 20 for the talented junior. She tied Lindsey Miller with her towering bomb to left! Schmidt plated Wilson and Morstadt with her single up the middle. Madzia drew a walk with the bases loaded before Brittany Huff's (Clayton/Northmont) liner back at the pitcher drove in Schmidt. With the bags full of Beavers, Chelsea Zoltowski smoked a 1-0 offering to the wall in left center, making it 8-0 before the dust settled!
Madzia kept the Spartans off the scoreboard despite five Manchester hits over the final three innings as Bluffton capped its second mercy-rule victory of the afternoon.
Zoltowski drove in three runs while Schmidt chipped in with two hits and two RBI. Madzia continued to impress, throwing five shutout innings just two days after being named the HCAC Pitcher of the Week. She fanned four and walked two while allowing six hits.
The Beavers are slated to finish their season at Rose-Hulman in Terre Haute, Ind. on Saturday, April 29. The first contest is scheduled for 1 p.m.