Softball drops back-to-back to Salukis


Freshman outfielder Bailey Broemmer drew five walks and got a hit against the Southern Illinois Salukis throughout the three-game series. Photo by Rebeca Mertins Chiodini/The News.

Ronan Summers, Staff Writer

The Racers traveled to Carbondale, Illinois this past weekend to play the SIU Salukis in what was Murray State’s final road series of the year. 

The weekend series that took place from Friday, April 28 through Sunday, April 30 was very competitive with both teams showing why they are at the top of the MVC. 

With the MVC Championship around the corner, a fourth game between these two teams in the tournament could be exactly what softball fans need. 

Game One

Senior right-handed pitcher Hannah James got the start for the Racers on Friday, as junior right-handed pitcher Hannah Hockerman got the start for the Salukis.

The Racers scored first, as freshman utility player Adison Hicks reached first base after an error by Hockerman at the top of the second inning. This error allowed freshman outfielder Bailey Broemmer to cross home plate, giving the game its first score. 

Sophomore outfielder Erin Lackey then bunted with junior infielder Lily Fischer on third base. The squeeze bunt was successful, as Fischer scored, and Lackey successfully made it to first base. 

SIU replaced Hockerman with right-handed pitcher Madi Eberle with one out at the top of the second inning. Eberle was able to do some damage control for her team, as the Salukis were down 2-0 at the end of the inning. 

The Racers added onto their lead at the top of the third inning, as Hicks hit a sacrifice flyout to allow freshman utility player Shelby Durbin to tag up and score. 

Senior infielder Lindsey Carroll doubled at the top of the fourth inning, driving in senior infielder Gracie Osbron and giving the Racers a 4-0 lead. Neither team scored after Carroll’s double, resulting in a 4-0 final score.

As a team, the Racers had five hits and five walks. Broemmer got on base on three occasions in the win. She walked twice, hit a single and scored a run. Lackey, Osbron, junior catcher Taylor Jackson and freshman infielder Ailey Schyck all recorded a hit respectively.

James pitched all seven innings, finishing with four strikeouts, one batter walked, five hits allowed and no earned runs. 

Game Two

Junior right-handed pitcher Jenna Veber got the start for the Racers on Saturday, as Eberle got the start for the Salukis. 

SIU got on the board in the bottom of the second inning after senior outfielder Aubree DePron singled up the middle, driving junior infielder Rylie Hamilton home. 

This was the only score of the game, as SIU won 1-0. 

Fischer recorded Murray State’s lone hit on Saturday, as Veber got the loss. Veber pitched all six innings, allowing four hits, one run, one walk and struck two batters out. 

Game Three

Sunday’s matchup was a shootout. Both teams brought their bats, as 23 total runs were scored.

Eberle started on Sunday for the Salukis, and James got the start for the Racers. Both starting pitchers had been replaced by the second inning. 

A Saluki error in the first inning set the Racers up to score twice at the top of the first inning. SIU knotted things back up after a two-run home run in the bottom of the first inning, ending the first inning 2-2.

SIU turned up the heat in the bottom of the second inning, scoring four times. A strong eight-run inning for the Racers allowed them to retake the lead at the top of the fourth. The fourth inning ended with the Racers up 10-6.

The Salukis added another run onto the board in the bottom of the fifth inning. The Racers retaliated at the top of the sixth with another run of their own. SIU hit a grand slam in the bottom of the sixth inning, tying the game at 11 apiece. 

The Racers were held scoreless at the top of the seventh inning, allowing the Salukis to hit a walkoff single in the bottom of the seventh inning and giving the Salukis a 12-11 win in what was an offensive thriller.

Murray State cycled through three pitchers and allowed 14 hits, 12 runs, eight earned runs and one walk in Sunday’s loss to the Salukis. Murray State batters recorded nine hits and five walks. They also left six runners on base. 

After the win and pair of losses, the Racers are 32-18 overall and 16-8 against conference opponents. Murray State now sits in fourth place just a little over a week away from the MVC Championship.

The Racers will host the Missouri State Bears in the team’s final regular season series of the year. The series will be held on Racer Field from Friday, May 5 through Sunday, May 7. 


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