EUREKA, Ill. – St. Louis Intercollegiate Athletic Conference leader Westminster used multi-run rallies in the top of the seventh inning of both games of a league doubleheader to top the Eureka College softball team twice, Saturday afternoon in Eureka, Ill. The Blue Jays prevailed in the opener, 4-0, and also won game two, 8-2.
The losses dropped Eureka to 19-7 overall and 9-5 in the league. Eureka celebrated its annual Senior Day prior to the contests. Kerrigan Dura (Edwards, Ill./Brimfield H.S.), Kali George (East Peoria, Ill./East Peoria H.S.), Krysten Wallace (Bartonville, Ill./Limestone H.S.) and Deidra Whightsil (Spring Valley, Ill./Hall H.S.) were each recognized during a pregame ceremony.
Game 1: Westminster 4, EC 0
Eureka had six hits in the opener, all singles, but stranded seven base runners throughout the contest. Dura finished game one 2-for-3.
The Red Devils advanced runners in scoring position in four separate innings, including a bases-loaded threat in the bottom of the third, but ultimately couldn't push a run across against WC right-hander Katie Price.
Westminster did all of its damage in a four-run seventh inning. Two hits and a walk loaded the bases for Aubrie Vaughn, who bounced into a fielder's choice that allowed pinch-runner Macalah Danielson to score the first run of the afternoon. A wild pitch later in the frame increased the WC lead to 2-0 and Mackenzie Myers followed with a two-run home run to left field and the lead was 4-0.
Price retired the Red Devils in order in the bottom of the seventh to end the game.
Game 2: Westminster 8, EC 2
The Red Devils logged 10 more hits in the nightcap, nine of which were singles. George went 3-for-3 with a run scored and Gabby Wood (Bartonville, Ill./Limestone H.S.) doubled for the hosts' only extra-base hit of the day.
Eureka took a 1-0 lead in the second inning. Three consecutive singles allowed Wallace to accept a bases-loaded walk – her school-record 82nd of her career – for a 1-0 Eureka lead.
The visitors quickly tied the game in the next half inning. Callie Collier pulled a one-out single through the left side of the infield and scored two batters later on Brooke Laidley's double to left-center. Eureka escaped the jam moments later when Wallace caught the second out of the inning and immediately threw to the plate to cut down Emily Holloway's attempt to tag and score from third base.
Morgan Osborn (Washington, Ill./Washington H.S.) hit a two-out RBI single to score George to push Eureka back to a 2-1 lead in the fourth inning. The lead would again be short-lived. Amber Tepen yanked a one-out RBI double into the gap that scored Collier for a 2-2 tie in the fifth.
Eureka threatened in the sixth and eventually drove WC starter Madison Ingram from the contest. Two singles and a wild pitch moved a pair of runners into scoring position with two outs, but Price entered the game in relief and kept the score even at 2-2 with a groundout that thwarted the threat.
With the game tied, Westminster erupted for six runs on eight hits in the seventh. Collier started the rally with a leadoff walk and Laidley's single through left side two batters later plated Danielson that held up as the game-winning run. All eight hits in the inning were singles and the Red Devils needed a 1-2-3 double play to finally escape further damage.
Eureka will break from the SLIAC schedule Sunday for a noon doubleheader against the NAIA St. Louis College of Pharmacy in Eureka.