WHEELING, W.Va. – The West Liberty University softball team’s bats were rolling out some heavy metal thunder here Wednesday in sweeping a Mountain East Conference doubleheader from Wheeling at the I-470 fields.
Coach Herb Minch’s Hilltoppers (11-9, 7-5) pounded out 25 hits and scored 17 runs in handing their Ohio County rivals back-to-back losses by scores of 7-1 and 10-0. The WLU pitching staff held Wheeling to just seven hits combined in the two games.
In the opener, West Liberty scored four runs in the top of the first and the Cardinals (5-15, 4-8) never threatened. Katie Beeman’s two-run single put the Hilltoppers ahead to stay with Laral Saunders adding an RBI double and Sydney Little singling home the fourth run of the game before the Cardinals had even come to bat.
Kat Donzella led a 10-hit barrage with a double and two singles while Beeman singled twice and drove in a pair of runs. Little had two singles and an RBI while winning pitcher Annie Paterson helped her own cause at the plate with an RBI double.
Paterson struck out six and walked one while holding WU to just four hits over the first five innings to earn the win. Makenzie Amend turned in an impressive relief performance, retiring the last six batters in order.
Donzella and Beeman were hard at work in the second game, as well. Beeman drove in three runs with a homer and a single while Donzella homered, doubled and chased home another tally. Allie Cook had two singles and two RBIs while Little and Anna Welsh added run-scoring base hits in the six-inning “mercy rule” win.
Riley Bennington and Taylor Bonnett teamed up on a three-hit shutout with Bennington hurling the first four innings to earn the win, striking out five without issuing a walk.
West Liberty 7, Wheeling 1
West Liberty 401 100 1 – 7 10 0
Wheeling 001 000 0 – 1 4 2
WLU: Paterson wp (6SO, 1W), Amend (6) (1SO, 0W) and Donzella. Donzella D, 2S; Beeman 2S, 2rbi; Saunders D, rbi; Paterson D, rbi; Little S, rbi
WU: Anderson lp (1SO, 2W) and Munoz. Florczak HR, S, rbi
West Liberty 10, Wheeling 0
West Liberty 200 205 – 10 15 0
Wheeling 000 000 – 0 3 3
WLU: Bennington wp (5SO, 0W), Bonnett (5) (0SO, 0W) and Donzella. Beeman HR, S, 3rbi; Donzella HR, D, rbi; Cook 2S, 2rbi; Assif 2S, rbi; Little S, rbi; Welsh S, rbi; Weidner D
WU: Macy lp (2SO, 2W) and Munoz. Florczak D