PEORIA, Ill. – Marian University softball (2-2, 0-0 NACC) defeated Edgewood 8-0 in six innings and 14-4 to earn their first sweep of the season.
The Sabres got another dominant outing in the circle from senior Paige Rauhut and used a strong finish to defeat the Eagles in the opener. Sophomore Kaley Ludvigsen opened the scoring in the bottom of the second with a sacrifice fly before senior Alexa Rodriguez singled two hitters later to drive in a run and put the Sabres ahead 2-0. Rodriguez padded the Marian lead in the bottom of the fourth with a three-run home run, her first long ball of the season. Fellow senior Peyton Loesch then hit her first homer of the season to put Marian ahead 6-0 in the bottom of the fifth. An error later in the inning gave Marian a 7-0 advantage after five innings. Loesch then invoked the mercy rule with her second homer of the game in the bottom of the sixth to put the final at 8-0.
Rauhut (1-1) went the distance allowing just three hits and striking out seven hitters. Loesch and Rodriguez each had a multi-hit game with Rodriguez driving in four runs.
The Marian offense kept rolling in game two scoring six runs each in the third and seventh inning to secure the sweep. An error in the top half of the first allowed a pair of runs to score and gave Marian an early lead. The Eagles were able to scratch across their first run in the bottom half of the inning to put the score at 2-1 after one. Ludvigsen then opened the big third inning with a run-producing single. A double from sophomore Andrea Miller scored a pair of runs before another three-run home run from Rodriguez gave Marian an 8-1 advantage heading to the bottom of the third.
Edgewood responded in the bottom of the fourth scoring a pair of runs to cut their deficit down to 8-3. Marian then put the game away in the seventh opening with an RBI from junior Paige Rivera. Senior Katy Croeker singles in a pair of runs to put Marian ahead 11-3 before a pair of freshmen earned their first-career hits. Freshman Evelynn Spaeth doubled to bring in a run which was followed by a two-RBI single from freshman Katelyn Matenaer to put the Sabres ahead 14-3. The Eagles would manage one run in the bottom of the seventh to set the final at 14-4.
Rodriguez, Loesch, and Croeker each had three hits in the win to pace the offense. Junior Cailie Pliner allowed just one unearned run in 3.0 innings of work, while sophomore Emalee Depa (1-0) earned the win tossing 3.0 innings of relief.
Marian returns to Rhinelander, Wis. Saturday, March 6 to take on Ripon in a non-conference doubleheader.