ROSEMONT, Ill. – Marian University softball (10-6, 2-0 NACC) defeated Dominican in a pair of 4-3 games to open NACC play.
The Sabre offense didn’t need much time to get things started as they opened their first NACC game of the season with a run in the top of the first. Sophomore Ally Fox singled to open the first game of the day and stole second before fellow sophomore Gianna Esposito drove her in with a single.
The Stars then answered with a run in the second and third inning to take a 2-1 lead. This lead wouldn’t last long, however, as Marian immediately retook the lead in the next half inning. Freshmen Alexa Rodriguez and Kenzie Waechter hit back-to-back triples that plated two runs in the inning to give the Sabres a 3-2 lead. Fox then followed that up with a single up the middle to bring in Waechter in what proved to be the game-winner.
Dominican would manage to cut their deficit down to 4-3 with a run in the fifth but sophomore Paige Rauhut managed to hold the Stars to only one runner the remainder of the game to seal the victory.
Rauhut (6-7) earned the complete game victory scattering seven hits only allowing a pair of earned runs to go with three punch outs. Offensively, Fox led the offense going 3-4 with an RBI and a run scored at the top of the lineup, while freshman Katy Croker and Rodriguez also had multi-hit games.
Marian once again jumped out to a good start to open the night cap of the doubleheader plating a pair of runs in the second and a third run in the third. Freshman Peyton Loesch opened the scoring in the second with a leadoff home run to left field, the first of her career. Junior Rachel Soch then brought in sophomore Taylor Lauscher with a double later in the inning. Esposito was able to drive in junior Lindsey Strainis in the next inning as Marian took a 3-0 lead.
The Stars wouldn’t go away quietly, however, plating a pair of runs in the bottom of the third to cut their deficit down to one. Marian was able to extend on their lead in the sixth with Soch hitting a sacrifice fly immediately following a Lauscher triple.
Dominican was able to put together a rally in the seventh inning after scoring a run and putting the tying and winning runs in scoring position with only one outs. Rauhut was able to bear down, however, as she caused a strikeout and ground out to close out the game and earn her first save of the season.
Loesch (3-2) went 4.0 innings to earn the win allowing four hits and a pair of runs, while freshman Myranda Schuttenhelm provided 2.0 innings of relief work allowing only one hit and one run.
Seven of the nine hitters in the Sabre lineup managed to record a hit but no one would have multiple hits. Soch led the offense going 1-2 with a pair of runs, while Lauscher also went 1-2 scoring a pair of runs.
Marian remains on the road traveling to Wisconsin Lutheran Thursday, March 29 for a noon NACC twin bill.