Softball finishes 3-1 in Liberty Softball Challenge

Sophomore infielder Rachel Vieira, left, high fives junior outfielder Lacey Tolfree, right, after they score runs during the first game of the double header against Ball State on April 29 at Margo Jonker Stadium.

After finishing 1-3 in last weekend's Mercer Invitational, Central Michigan softball bounced back with a 3-1 record in the Liberty Softball Challenge.

CMU sits at 4-4 on the season.

CMU won both games on Thursday, knocking off Delaware State 9-0 in five innings and Liberty 8-5. Friday saw the Chippewas knock off Delaware State again 3-2 while falling to Liberty 4-3 in nine innings.

17-run Thursday

CMU scored 17 runs combined against Delaware State and Liberty.

The Chippewas started the day with a 9-0 romp of Delaware State in five innings, scoring four runs in the second and five in the fourth.

Senior Hanna Warren allowed one hit and two walks while striking out four Hornet batters in her five innings of work.

Right fielder Lacy Tolfree went three-for-three with two triples while driving in two runs. Catcher Maison Kalina went two-for-three with three RBI’s. 

CMU turned around immediately to face Liberty. 

The Chippewas carried an 8-1 lead going into the seventh. Liberty’s four-run rally was not enough as CMU knocked off the Flames 8-5.

Karina stayed hot at the plate, going two-for-four with two doubles and three RBI’s against the Flames. Junior Erika Underwood hit her fourth home run of the season, this one of the two-run variety.

Cloe Mallory pitched six and one-third innings, surrendering three runs off nine hits while striking out one batter. Taylor Weaver entered the game with one out in the seventh. The senior lasted one-third of an inning while allowing two earned runs off three hits. 

Warren finished off the game for the Chippewas seeing two hitters, allowing one walk while earning a strikeout for the final out.

Walk-off and Heartbreak

CMU opened up Friday’s action with a rematch against the Hornets.

Despite three errors the Chippewas defeated DSU 3-2.

CMU entered the seventh leading 2-1. The Hornets found a way to tie the game at 2-2, but second baseman Rachel Vieira’s second hit of the game, and RBI single, sealed the game for the Chippewas in walk-off fashion.

Freshman Samantha Howell earned her second win of the season, holding the hornets to two runs (one earned) off six hits and one walk while striking out one in seven innings.

Hannah Shields hurled six and two-third innings for the Hornets, allowing three runs (two earned) off 10 hits while striking out one Chippewa. 

CMU finished off the tournament with a second clash against Liberty.

The Flames carried a 2-0 lead into the fourth inning until Allison Curtis struck with a two-run double to tie the game.

Curtis would add another run thanks to Kalina scoring off a Curtis sacrifice fly in the sixth.

CMU looked poised to finish the two-day tournament with a 4-0 record until Amber Bishop blasted a home run to tie the game 3-3. 

Neither team would score until the ninth inning.

Autumn Bishop lead off the ninth with a double for the Flames. After advancing to third off a sacrifice bunt Bishop scored off a Tori Zavodny triple to give Liberty a 4-3 lead.

The Chippewas failed to score in the ninth, falling to the Flames 4-3. 

Warren pitched 8 and two-third innings, surrendering four runs off 12 hits while striking out two.

CMU Softball travels south for the USF Under Armour Invitational starting March 2 against Penn.