By Nicholas Huenefeld/Owens Sports Information
Toledo, OH---Ashlyn Michalak started shaky, but settled down to finish off a come from behind, complete game victory over Tiffin University JV before the No. 7 Express rolled in the second game of a sweep at home Tuesday.
Game 1: Owens 4 Tiffin University JV 3
Down 3-0, the Express scored twice in the fourth and fifth innings to pick up the 4-3 win.
Katie Butler started the first Express rally in the fourth inning with a leadoff walk. Amanda Sinay would come in to pinch run, and she would advance to second on a throwing error with one out. After a strikeout, Sinay scored on two wild pitches to make it 3-1. Mareshah Scott then drew a two out walk, stole second and scored on a single to center by Hallie Thompson.
In the fifth, Tabitha Britt walked to lead off the inning before being sacrificed to second by Sydney Barron. Butler then knocked her home with a sharp single to left field to tie the game at three. Butler later scored the game winning run on a wild pitch.
Michalak, after allowing a run in the first and two in the fourth, retired nine of the final 11 batters she faced to pick up her 11th win this season. She allowed four hits, four walks and three runs (two earned) while striking out seven.
Ashley Ries took the loss for Tiffin. She allowed seven hits, four runs (three earned) and five walks while striking out five over the first five innings. Samantha Phillips pitched the sixth and allowed one hit with one strikeout.
Thompson finished 2-for-3 with an RBI for the Express, while Butler was 1-for-2 with a run, an RBI and a walk. Melanie Iacoangeli was 2-for-3, but her nine game streak with at least one stolen base came to an end.
Game 2: Owens 8 Tiffin University JV 0
Butler and her teammates executed what may have been the highlight of the day in the first inning. With Iacoangeli on third and Barron on second, Butler laid down a push bunt towards short. Tiffin's third baseman picked it up and threw her out, but both runners came around on a double suicide squeeze that worked to perfection and put Owens up 2-0.
In the second, the Express took a 3-0 lead when Olivia Reeder walked, advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt by Scott, and scored on a double to left field by Hollister.
After Sheets held Tiffin scoreless through three, Graham came on in the fourth. She allowed a two-out single, but nothing else. Then, in the bottom half, the Express scored five times.
Aja Hall singled to left field leading off the inning. Following a flyout, Scott singled to put runners on first and second. Thompson then reached on an error to load the bases before Hollister singled home two runs. After a walk by Iacoangeli to reload the bases, Jaylee Glad drew a bases loaded walk to make it 6-0.
Following a pitching change, Hollister scored on a passed ball and Iacoangeli scored on a fielding error by Tiffin's shortstop to close the scoring. Hall, who started the inning with a single, then popped out to short to end the inning.
Graham then allowed an infield single to second base leading off the seventh, but retired the next three batters to close out the game.
Sheets (7-1) picked up the win, while Graham was credited with her team-high third save of the year. The final line for Sheets included two hits and two walks in three innings, while Graham's final line included two hits and one strikeout in two innings.
Hollister was 2-for-2 with a run, three RBIs and a double. Butler was 0-2, but executed the double squeeze to earn two RBIs, while Iacoangeli was 1-for-2 with two runs and a walk.
The Express (22-2) will take on OCCAC foe Cuyahoga Community College in a home doubleheader beginning at 3:30 p.m. on Wednesday.
Iacoangeli had her nine game stolen base streak snapped, but she extended her hitting streak to 13 games with her 4-for-6 day. In those 13 games, she is hitting .619 with 16 runs, 26 hits, one double, five RBIs, five walks and 20 stolen bases. She is hitting .538 overall.
Hall, who is now 3-for-8 in four games with the Express since joining the team following the end of basketball season, picked up a hit in each game today.
Hollister is now hitting .453 this year and added to her team-high RBI total today. She has 27 this year.
Every Express regular is hitting at least .320 except two. As a team, Owens is hitting .357.
Scott's stolen base in the second game was her 16th this year...in 16 attempts. She is second on the team in stolen bases behind Iacoangeli, who has 29.
Michalak is now 11-0 with a 1.02 ERA and 125 strikeouts in 82.2 innings pitched.