From University of Chicago Athletics
The University of Chicago softball team closed out its regular season on Wednesday afternoon with a pair of dominating victories over Elmhurst College.
The Maroons improved to 25-8 overall, including a 13-3 record at home. The Bluejays fell to 18-20.
Between games, UChicago recognized its four seniors on Senior Day – first base Kathleen Kohm, shortstop Kristin Lopez, outfielder Devan Parkison and pitcher Jordan Poole. The senior class owns a four-year record of 83-53 (.610 winning percentage) with one postseason berth in 2014.
UChicago now looks to secure an at-large bid into the NCAA Division III Championship. The NCAA selection show will stream online on Monday, May 9 at Noon (CT): http://www.ncaa.com/liveschedule
Game One – UChicago 5, Elmhurst 0
The Maroons got on the board right off the bat and rode strong pitching from Poole to the shutout win. UChicago has now tallied 10 shutouts on the season – the team's most since 2011 (11).
Lopez collected an infield single and stole second base. She then scored when junior third base Maggie O'Hara singled through the right side in the first inning.
It took a few more innings for UChicago's hitters to solve the Elmhurst pitcher. But the Maroons eventually added onto its advantage with two in the fifth inning and two in the sixth inning. After a single and double to start the fifth, freshman outfielder Carly Schulz knocked a fly ball deep enough to center field to score the runner from third base. Lopez had an RBI groundout to make it 3-0. The next frame, freshman outfielder Maeve Garvey blasted the first pitch she saw over the left field fence for a two-run homer.
Those insurance runs were more than enough for Poole (8-4 record) in the pitching circle. The senior silenced Elmhurst's bats, only allowing one walk and three hits in seven innings. She also struck out six batters to notch her fourth shutout of the season and the ninth of her career.
UChicago ended up with eight hits, led by Poole's 3-for-3 performance at the plate. O'Hara also went 2-for-3.
Game Two – UChicago 14, Elmhurst 5
The Maroons made quick work of the Bluejays in the second contest and ended the game after five innings. The 14 runs scored were a season-high.
The hosts came out blazing by scoring four runs in the first inning, six runs in the second and four more in the third. Three-straight singles to start the game loaded the bases before O'Hara drew an RBI walk. Freshman second base Colleen Bennett and Garvey followed with a single and a walk, respectively, to make it 3-0. An RBI groundout from freshman pitcher Jordyne Prussak closed out the initial outburst.
The offense accelerated the very next time up to bat. Kohm singled down the right field line to bring in two runs, and an error on a stolen base attempt plated the runner from third. Two fielder's choices and Parkison's single pushed the lead to 10-1.
Garvey provided the icing on the cake when she pounded a grand slam to center field in the third inning. Her two home runs on the day upped her season total to four. She also finished with seven RBI between the two games.
Elmhurst scored once in the second inning and four more times in the fifth. But UChicago slammed the door at the end for the victory. Prussak extended her perfect record to 8-0 with four innings, one run, four hits, one walk and one strikeout. Junior Alexa Hanelin (4 R, 2 H, 3 BB, 1 K) threw the final inning.
The Maroons mashed the ball to the tune of 13 hits. Five players finished with two base-knocks each, including Garvey (2-for-2, 1 HR, 5 RBI); Kohm (2-for-2, 2 RBI); Bennett (2-for-4, 1 RBI); Parkison (2-for-3, 1 RBI); and Lopez (2-for-3).