Heading into the final week of the regular season, DePauw (10-2, 21-12) holds a one game lead over Wittenberg (9-3, 16-12) 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 on Wednesday, four on Saturday and the league schedule concluding on Sunday as Hiram (4-4, 8-16) hosts Denison (4-6, 12-16) in Granville.
ALLEGHENY went 3-1 on the week to move to 6-4 in the NCAC, sweeping Wooster on Wednesday, before earning a split at first-place DePauw on Saturday. Two of the three victories came in extra innings, as the Gators topped Wooster, 10-9, in nine innings in Wednesday’s nightcap, before again needing nine innings to top the Tigers, 1-0, in Saturday’s opener. Sadie Stuart (Jamestown, NY/Falconer Central) batted .417 (5-for-12) in the four games, with a home run, double, four RBI, and three runs scored, while slugging .750. Caitlin Nealer (New Kensington, PA/Valley) threw a pair of complete-game shutouts, upping her career total to 20, while going 3-1 overall with a 2.26 ERA and 17 K’s in 22 innings on the week.
DENISON went 2-4 in NCAC play last week, including a home sweep of Oberlin, 6-3, 13-0. Sophomore Ryan Lee (Wilmette, IL/New Trier) went .450 (9-for-20) with two doubles, four RBI, two runs and two stolen bases in six starts. Sophomore Kerry Hager (Louisville, KY/Eastern) and freshman Lauren Secaras (Wilmette, IL/New Trier) each drove in five runs, scored two more and swiped a base. Against the Yeowomen, sophomore Erin Laswell (Plainfield, IN/Plainfield) scattered five hits and struck out three en route to her second-career shutout.
DEPAUW posted a 4-2 record last week, including splitting a doubleheader at No. 8 Illinois Wesleyan. For the week, DePauw posted a 1.47 ERA and held the opponents to just a .191 batting average. The Tigers can clinch their third-straight NCAC title this week.
HIRAM picked up a key sweep over Oberlin on Saturday to stay in the thick of the NCAC Tournament race. The Terriers used some late heroics to pick up a 3-2 walkoff win in Game one and used a four-run fifth to score a 4-2 Game two victory. Junior Meghan Garland (Mineral Ridge, OH/Mineral Ridge) picked up the wins in both games by firing complete games.
KENYON completed a perfect week, sweeping Denison for just the second time in program history and following up with another sweep at Wooster. The Ladies chalked up 7-5 and 6-0 wins at home against Denison and matching 5-2 wins at Wooster. For the week, senior Chelsea Delaney (Kenilworth, IL/New Trier) was 8-of-14 at the plate (.571), while classmate Maddy Stark (Glenview, IL/Glenbrook South) was 4-0 with a 2.89 ERA in the the pitchers circle. The victories helped Stark set the Kenyon single-season record for pitching wins (19).
OBERLIN swept Wooster in a Sunday afternoon makeup game. A walk-off homerun from senior Jenny Goldsmith (West Chicago, IL/West Chicago Community) gave the Yeowomen game one. Game two was a high-scoring affair as the Yeowomen put up a season-high 11 runs on 12 hits. Senior Katie Pieplow (Rescue, CA/Ponderosa) pitched both games, throwing a two-hit shutout in game one and going 3-for-3 at the plate with three runs and an RBI in the second session. Tori Poplaski (Waterloo, NY/Waterloo) was a force at the plate in game two, going 2-for-2 with a game-high five RBI, including a three-run home run. The Yeowomen will play six games in the coming week to close out the 2015 campaign.
OHIO WESLEYAN dropped to 2-10 in league play after being swept last week by Wooster and DePauw. The Bishops also lost a pair of game to Case to move their overall record to 11-19 on the year. Ohio Wesleyan returns to action on Wednesday with a doubleheader scheduled at Hiram.
WITTENBERG was 4-0 last week with sweeps of Oberlin and Denison, including a walk-off win in a 2-1 victory over the Big Red on Saturday as the Tigers came from behind in the seventh and won on an RBI single by freshman Sam Bausch (Cincinnati, OH/Turpin). Junior Kaela Hughes (Columbus, OH/Watterson) finished the week 7-for-15 (.467) with two doubles, a triple and a home run withfour RBI and a slugging percentage of .933, while freshman Chelsea Zang (Cincinnati, OH/Seton) pitched two wins with a 0.37 ERA in 19 innings with six strikeouts in three starts.
WOOSTER had a busy week, going 2-6 while playing four NCAC doubleheaders. The Scots’ highlight was a sweep of Ohio Wesleyan, 1-0 and 12-4. Freshman Maddy Chase (Pleasant Prairie, WI/St. Joseph’s) compiled an impressive 1.84 ERA as the starter in the first game of all four NCAC doubleheaders. She began the week with a 1-0 shutout at Ohio Wesleyan, and later, suffered tough-luck losses to Allegheny, 3-0 with two of the three runs being unearned, and Oberlin, 1-0.