OTTAWA, Kan. - Bethel softball traveled up to Ottawa earlier this afternoon, to take on the Ottawa Braves in a double header. The bats just weren't connecting very well, which seems to be a bit of a reoccuring theme during a tough stretch of their schedule when they need it the most. The Lady Threshers dropped Game 1 by a score of 8-1 with five hits, while in Game 2 were limited to just one single hit in a 5-0 loss.
Starting pitcher Abbie Hutton (FR/Fox Island, Wa.) and fielders were able to turn in a clean first inning of work, but the Braves opened up the game in the second. Despite a double play pulled off by Trista Rich (SR/Junction City, Kan.) and Madison McDowell (SO/Basehor, Kan.), where Rich caught a line drive in center and picked off the returning runner at second, Bethel allowed two runs off of errors.
The Braves would score once more in the bottom of the third to take a 3-0 advantage, were held scoreless in the fourth, but then unleashed four more runs in the fifth.
Bethel was finally able to get on the board in the top of the sixth, which was lead off by a triple deep into left by McDowell. After Katie Schrag (JR/Haven, Kan.) forced a walk, Alyssa Sullivan (JR/Kansas City, Kan.) hit a sacrifice fly into centerfield, and brought home McDowell. Kiera Broehl (JR/Wichita) would draw a walk, which was followed by a single by Michelle Schrag (SO/Moundridge, Kan.), effectively loading the bases. This made Ottawa change pitchers, and unfortunately the "Left on Base Blues" continued for the Lady Threshers, as they then took two outs to complete the inning before real damage could be done.
Ottawa was able to tack on one more run in the bottom of the sixth, and took the game 8-1.
Game 2 proved to be even dimmer for Bethel, as Ottawa managed to throw a one-hitter between two pitchers. This hit in question came early in the second inning, as Jeni Reichenberger (JR/Wichita, Kan.) was able to pop a single into center field.
Despite this negativity, McDowell might have tossed her best outing of the season, as she held the Braves to just one run in the first four innings, and struck out three.
Unfortunately, Ottawa was able to figure out Bethel reliever Rylie Scudder (SO/Little Elm, Texas), and managed four runs off her pitches in the fifth inning, taking a 5-0 lead. With the lack of hitting, there was no way Bethel could get back into it, and they left Ottawa with the loss.
Bethel falls to 15-18 on the season, with a 6-10 record in the KCAC. This puts them in ninth place in the conference standings, although many teams ahead of them still need to play quite a few games, which have likely been rescheduled due to the consistent storms earlier in the season. Bethel's next chance to improve comes on Wednesday, April 19th, when they welcome the University of Saint Mary to Wedel Field, with the double header starting at 1:00 PM.