Ferris State University pitcher Kayle Stevenson (Holland/West Ottawa) recorded her seventh consecutive victory with a five-hit performance in propelling the Bulldogs to a 2-1 triumph over the nationally ninth-ranked Wayne State Warriors this Sunday (April 25) afternoon in game two of a Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) twinbill at the WSU Softball Stadium in Detroit, Mich.
Ferris State, which won three of its four league games this weekend against a pair of nationally-ranked opponents, runs its overall record to 23-15 and 14-8 in the conference. The Bulldogs have prevailed in six of their last eight outings to date following this game-two decision.
Kayle Stevenson (11-6), a senior, continued to be at the top of her game as she limited the Wayne State to a single run while allowing only five hits in the seven-inning tilt. Stevenson was effective in the circle as she struck out five and walked none to post her seventh straight win dating back to a complete-game win at Hillsdale (April 11).
Neither team was able to get on the scoreboard until the top of the fifth when WSU tallied on Brittany Omelanchuk's RBI double to go up 1-0. Ferris State countered on the bottom half of the fifth inning with two runs on two hits and a Warriors' error. WSU elected to make a pitching change to start the frame off as Casey Hanes replaced starting hurler Nicole Abel, but the switch was able to work in the Bulldogs' favor. Senior second baseman Amanda Harrington (St. Joseph/Stevensville-Lakeshore) drew a leadoff and moved up to second base on a groundout. Following FSU's second out, sophomore third baseman Makenzi Peterson (Big Rapids) singled down the left field line and would move on to second as a result of the error which allowed Harrington to score and tie the contest at 1-1. Senior designated player Rhea Flores (Dearborn Heights/Southgate Anderson) followed with a RBI infield single to the shortstop, scoring Peterson for the Bulldogs' second unearned run and snapping a one-all deadlock.
Wayne State had two more opportunities in the sixth and seventh innings to score, but Kayle Stevenson continued to mix pitches and keep the Warriors off balance. WSU went down in order in the sixth before making the outcome rather tense in the seventh as the Warriors had the tying run on third base with one out. Stevenson escaped trouble by striking out Steph Foreman swinging and then caught pinch-hitter Bailey Reid looking for the call third strike to end the game.
Makenzi Peterson's two hits represented a team high for Ferris State, which produced five hits and left eight runner stranded to the Warriors' four.
The Bulldogs will finish up the final week of regular-season play with conference road doubleheaders at Northwood this Tuesday (April 27) and at Grand Valley State this Saturday (May 1). The opening pitch for game one of Tuesday's twinbill at Northwood is 3 p.m. (EDT) with the second game to proceed around 5:30 p.m. (EDT).