Tigers Drop NCAC Pair At Denison
GRANVILLE, Ohio — For the second time in four days, the Wittenberg softball team battled a North Coast Athletic Conference (NCAC) contender on its home field only to come up short after losing a pair to Denison 3-1 and 4-1.
The losses pushed the Tigers' once-promising season to the brink as Wittenberg dropped to 22-14 overall and, more importantly, 7-7 in the NCAC. The Tigers have lost four in a row against nationally ranked DePauw and Denison, the defending regular season conference champion, and now stand in a five-way tie for third place.
Only the top four teams earn spots in the NCAC Tournament, scheduled for May 4-6. The Tigers will wrap up NCAC regular season play against Oberlin at home on April 25.
With so much on the line, Wittenberg picked up a pair of solid pitching performances against the Big Red. However, the bats were all but silent as the Tiger offense was held to just two hits in the first game and seven in the nightcap. Just one of those hits, a first-inning RBI triple in the opener by sophomore Laura Rose (Riverside, Ohio/Stebbins), went for extra bases.
The stagnant offense spoiled another strong outing from freshman Julia Williams (Glenview, Ill./Glenbrook South), who went the distance in the opener, allowing eight hits and no walks while surrendering three earned hits.
In Game 2, Wittenberg stranded nine runners, including a trio in the top of the seventh with the Tigers trailing by three runs. Rose drove in Wittenberg's lone run in the nightcap with an RBI single in the seventh inning.
Sophomore Rachel Ross (Westerville, Ohio/South) didn't have her finest performance on the mound, but she limited the damage to four runs (three earned) over six innings to give her team a chance to rally.
Rose finished 2-for-4 on the day, while sophomore Kaitie Harrison (Springfield, Ohio/Kenton Ridge) reached base all three times with two singles and a walk.