BY GRAYSON PRATHER | STAFF REPORTER | firstname.lastname@example.org
The Butler Softball team extended its win streak today, defeating Eastern Illinois University 8-5 at home.
The Panthers scored early with an RBI single from Bailey O’Dell, scoring April Markowski in the top of the 1st.
The Bulldogs responded quickly, though, with a grand slam from Freshman Alyssa Lach in the bottom of the first.
“I knew that I needed to put the ball in play hard,” Lach said. “We had runners on, [I] just tried to get them in. She put one inside and I was able to turn on it.”
After the game, Butler head coach Scott Hall said Lach has been playing beyond her years as of late.
“[She] is playing like a Senior,” Hall said. “Defensively, offensively, the last few games she’s really played really well for us.”
Eastern Illinois came back in the top of the fourth inning with a two-run home run from Amber Toenyes to cut the deficit to one.
Butler added insurance runs in the fifth with a solo home run from Kristen Boros and a pair of RBI doubles from Lach and Audrey Hiner to extend the Bulldogs’ lead to 8-3.
Markowski came back in the top of the sixth to hit a two-run home run for the Panthers, but that was all they would get.
Kacey Starwalt (6-3), who pitched 3.1 innings, received the win for Butler. Mikeila Boroff came in with one out in the fourth inning to pick up the save, only giving up three hits in 3 and ⅔ innings.
Lach saw today’s win as a strong picture of what the Bulldogs have been doing well.
“Today, all around, as a team, we just keep hitting the ball hard and putting it in play,” Lach said. “Defensively, just try to keep it clean, making smart plays and bringing energy this whole weekend [is what we need to do].”
Lach also thought the encouragement she saw from her teammates was superb.
“I think our energy was great,” Lach said. “We had a lot of talk the whole game and we just kept up and we stayed in the game all seven innings.”
Coach Hall said he thinks they are finally able to have the success that they are looking for.
“They’ve got to continue to execute,” Hall said about the Bulldogs’ pitching. “We get timely hitting; that always makes a difference…we’re catching some breaks finally.”