• Rick Capone, Sports Editor

Midway softball sweeps doubleheader over IU Southeast

KELSEY GRAVENS, a junior on the Midway University softball team, led the way in Midway’s doubleheader sweep of Indiana University Southeast on Friday, March 24. Gravens went 6-for-10 at the plate with a triple, two doubles, two RBIs and she also scored a run. (Photo by Midway Athletics)

The Midway University softball team picked up its first two wins in River States Conference play on Friday, March 24, when the Eagles swept Indiana University Southeast in a doubleheader. In the first game of the doubleheader, the Eagles got seven strong innings from senior Tiffany Wickline in the circle to walk away with the 4-2 win in game one. Then in the second game, Midway scored a run in the 10th inning to score a 5-4 win in extra innings and sweep the doubleheader. With those two wins, the Eagles ran their overall record to 6-12 overall and 2-2 in River States play. As mentioned, Wickline was strong in the first game for Midway. The senior pitched seven innings and only allowed two runs on eight hits, while getting six strikeouts. The Eagles scored two runs in the fourth and fifth innings to get the win. Junior Kelsey Gravens and senior Addie Murphy both went 2-for-4 and scored once, while Gravens drove in a run. Juniors Carly Benz, Katelynn Mogelberg-Kauffman and Kolbi Mitchell drove in one run each. In the second game, the Eagles held a 4-3 lead heading into the seventh inning, but the Grenadiers scored a run in the bottom of the seventh to tie the game at 4. Then in the 10th, Gravens ripped a triple to score what turned out to be the game-winning run. Gravens led the way going 4-for-6 day, while freshman Jasmine Jordan scored a pair of runs on a pinch-hit single in the fourth. Sophomore Missa Walker also collected two hits and an RBI. Benz started the game with one of the most exciting plays in softball – an inside the park home run, as she ripped a 1-1 pitch past the left fielder. The ball rolled all the way to the wall and allowed Benz to score standing up. Sophomore Abby Flaig started the game and allowed two runs on three hits in two innings of work. Freshman Emily McGlothin picked up the win in relief, tossing eight innings and allowing two runs – one earned – on 10 hits. The Eagles are scheduled to host Point Park (Pa.) on Friday, March 31, at 3 p.m. Then on Saturday, they are scheduled to host Carlow (Pa.) at 1 p.m. Baseball The Midway University baseball team was back in action last week when it hosted Cincinnati Christian (Ohio) in a pair of doubleheaders on Thursday, March 23, and Friday, March 24. Midway outscored Cincinnati Christian 25-3 over the four-game series on the way to the series sweep. Over their first four series within River States Conference play, the Eagles have swept three of those series. In the first game on Thursday, the Eagles walked away with a 5-1 win. Then, in the second game, they used three pitchers to shutout CCU, 9-0. On Friday, Midway won the first game 9-2 and then they shutout the visitors to win 2-0 and sweep the series. With the series sweep behind them the Eagles run their record to 16-13 overall and 13-3 in River States Conference play. Midway head coach Luther Bramblett’s team has been on a roll lately, as they have won eight of their last nine contests. In the first game, Midway got six strong innings from junior Chase Heslep, running his record to 4-1 on the season with the win. He struck out nine and allowed only one run on three hits in six innings. Sophomore Neal Kirkpatrick pitched the seventh inning and allowed just one hit to seal the 5-1 win. Offensively, the Eagles scored three runs in the fifth and two in the sixth. Senior Josh Wenning drove in a pair of runs with a triple, while junior Carlos Cespedes tallied a team-high two hits and also scored a run. Senior Hector Quinones hit a solo home run and Reid Battles also collected an RBI. Then in the second game, Bramblett used three pitchers to shutout CCU, 9-0. Junior James Davenport tossed five innings, striking out six and allowing just two hits. After Kirkpatrick pitched a scoreless sixth inning, sophomore Hunter Barnes tossed a 1-2-3 seventh inning to seal the victory. The offense came alive for Midway, as the Eagles scored runs on 10 hits. Quinones led the way at the plate going 3-for-4 with two doubles, three RBIs and two runs scored. Junior Danny Maguire also drove in two runs, while junior Barrett Croslin and sophomore Koy Lindsey also drove in one each. The top three in the line-up for Midway had only four hits, but they got on base and scored six of the nine runs for Midway. Freshman Noah Marion, Battles and Croslin also scored one run each. In the first game on Friday, the Eagles tied their season-high with 13 hits, scoring five runs in the first inning to win 9-2. Junior southpaw DJ Lewis took home the win allowing two runs – one earned – on four hits in six innings. He also struck out a season-high nine batters. Senior Derek Jones tossed a scoreless seventh to nail down the win. The Eagles had seven different batters tally an RBI. Battles and Maguire both collected two hits and two RBIs, while Croslin ripped three hits and drove in one. Wenning also tallied two hits and one RBI. In addition, junior Haden Fox, Cespedes and Quinones also drove in one run each. In the nine-man lineup, the top eight scored all nine of Midway’s runs. Cespedes scored twice, while freshman Matthew Olson, Battles, Croslin, Fox, Maguire, Quinones and Wenning also scored once. In the series finale, the Eagles scored two runs in the third inning, while Hector Quinones and senior Jake McCoy combined for the shutout. Quinones tossed 4.2 innings, allowing just three hits and striking out six. McCoy recorded his seventh save of the season after fanning five in the final 2.1 innings. It was a quiet day for Midway offense, as they tallied four hits. But but more importantly, they scored two runs. Olson drove in the first run scoring Marion, while Quinones helped out his own cause with a single to score Olson in the third inning. After the dust settled on the weekend, Midway sits in first place in the RSC with a one-game lead over Point Park (Pa.), which is second. In third place and two games back is Indiana University Southeast, while Rio Grande (Ohio) is in fourth place, three games behind. Midway will return to action this week when they travel to Beckley, W.Va., to take on West Virginia Tech. Their next home series is against Asbury (Ky.) on April 7 and 8. (Information courtesy of Dylan Brown/Midway Univ. Sports Information).

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