Heading into the final week of the regular season, DePauw (10-2, 20-14) holds a two game lead over Wittenberg (8-4, 18-6) for the top spot in league standings. With all four tournament spots still up in the air, North Coast action continues this week with four doubleheaders scheduled for Wednesday, four on Saturday and the league schedule concluding on Sunday as Kenyon (4-8, 19-13) takes on Denison (6-4, 14-12) in Granville.
ALLEGHENY went 2-2 last week, sweeping Hiram on Thursday before dropping two games to conference-leading DePauw on Saturday. Alexis Ryan (Harrison City, PA/Penn-Trafford) hit an even .500 (5-for-10) on the week, while Katrina George (New Kensington, PA/Valley) and Halea Hayden (Pittsburgh, PA/North Hills) each batted .417 (5-for-12). In the Hiram set, the Gators totaled 23 hits, including nine for extra bases and a season-high three homers in game two. Sadie Stuart (Jamestown, NY/Falconer Central) homered in both ends of the doubleheader, while Belle Mazurik (Saegertown, PA/Saegertown) went 5-for-8 with two doubles on the day. Caitlin Nealer (New Kensington, PA/Valley) earned a pair of complete game wins, with 11 strikeouts in each game.
DENISON went 1-1 last week in a doubleheader against Wittenberg on Saturday in Granville. Senior Rebecca Dyer (Shelby Township, MI/Detroit Country Day) pitched DU to a 2-1 win in the opener. She struck out nine and scattered three hits in the win. Dyer came back and pitched 1.2 innings of relief in game two. She fanned 10 on the day and logged a 2.42 ERA. Dyer is 8-3 and leads Denison with a 1.26 ERA in 72.0 innings pitched. Freshman Kerry Hager (Louisville, KY/Eastern) led DU at the plate, going 3-for-5 (.600) wit one RBI and one double.
With Saturday’s sweep at Allegheny, DEPAUW has a two-game lead over Wittenberg in the NCAC standings with four games remaining. DePauw is going after its second-straight conference title. Sophomore Linsey Button (Ballwin, MO/Lafayette) charged a Tiger lineup with six RBI, including a grand slam, a triple and a stolen base.
HIRAM dropped three of four NCAC contests last week, being swept by Allegheny before splitting with Oberlin to bring the Terriers’ NCAC record to 5-7 on the year. Senior Sarah Loyer (Barrie, Ontario/St. Joseph’s) was a bright spot in the lineup for Hiram, batting .429 (6-for-14) with three runs scored, six total bases and three stolen bases.
KENYON played just one doubleheader last week and swept Wooster by scores of 8-0, in five innings, and 2-1, in seven innings. Junior pitcher Maddy Stark (Glenview, IL/Glenbrook South) threw all 12 innings for the Ladies, did not give up an earned run, struck out eight, and allowed just three hits. Her eight strikeouts give her 108 for the season and a Kenyon record 299 for her career. Stark also went 4-for-7 at the plate in the doubleheader.
OBERLIN went 1-3 last week and are now 7-19 on the year heading into the final week of the regular season. The Yeowomen’s highlight of the week came in a 10-5 victory over Hiram. Oberlin scored all 10 of their runs in the first three innings and used strong starting pitching and defense to help the lead stand up. First-year Grace Evans (Arlington, VA/HB Woodlawn) led the Yeowomen offensively in the win by going 3-for-4 at the plate with four RBI.
OHIO WESLEYAN went 2-2 last week, splitting a pair of doubleheaders, first with Wooster and then with non-conference opponent Case on Saturday. On the week, freshman Taylor Dickson (Baltimore, OH/Liberty Union) led the way for the Bishops’ hitting .500 (6-for-12) with two homeruns, five RBI, 14 total bases and an impressive 1.167 slugging percentage.
WITTENBERG went 3-1 last week to keep hold of second place in the league race. Wins of 9-1 and 10-1 versus Oberlin preceded a 2-1 loss at Denison before an 8-0 victory over the Big Red. Freshman Abby Baker (Canfield, OH/Canfield) batted .455 with a triple and a home run for five RBI and a .909 slugging percentage, adding two walks for an on-base percentage of .538, leading the team in all three percentages. Senior Rachel Ross (Westerville, OH/South) collected all four pitching decisions in 20 innings with a 0.70 ERA and 19 hits, three runs, two earned, and nine strikeouts.
Junior Paige Goldberg (Hawthorn Woods, IL/Lake Zurich) had a hit in three of WOOSTER'S four games last week, highlighted by a one-out single during a three-run rally in the bottom of the seventh inning of its 4-3 walk-off win over Ohio Wesleyan. Kate Edgehouse (Olmsted Falls, OH/Olmsted Falls) split a pair of one-run games, defeating Ohio Wesleyan and then dropping a pitcher’s duel, 2-1, at Kenyon. Overall, she posted a 2.15 ERA, lowering her season mark to 3.42, and struck out eight during the two complete-game performances (13.0 total innings). On the week, Wooster posted a 1-3 record to move to 11-22 overall heading into the final week of the regular season.