TIFFIN, OHIO -- The Defiance College softball team earned a split against non-conference opponent Heidelberg University falling to the Student Princes, 4-2, in game one, but winning the nightcap, 7-3.
Defiance (5-7) got on the scoreboard first in game one with a run in the top of the third inning on a RBI-single by junior Kaity Kuhn (Celina) to make the score 1-0.
The margin remained a run until the bottom of the sixth when Heidelberg (7-5) struck for a pair of runs to take a 2-1 lead.
The Yellow Jackets then evened the score at 2-2 with a run in the top of the seventh inning that came on a triple by by freshman Brooke Gostomsky (Covington) that scored senior Megan Warren (Mason) who had singled earlier in the inning. But the Student Princes capitalized in the bottom half of the inning with a walk-off two-run homerun to take the 4-2 victory.
Both teams recorded seven hits in the game with DC having one player having a multi-hitt game in Gostomsky who went two-of-four with the RBI. Five other players finished with a base hit, including Warren who went one-of-two with a run scored. Kuhn ended the game one-of-four with a RBI.
On the mound, junior Sarah Kaya (Lorain/Clearview) started the game and pitched 5.2 innings and ended up with a no decision. She allowed two runs on six hits and had two strikeouts. Fellow junior Sydni Smith (Jackson, Mich./Lumen Christi) pitched the final inning and would suffer the loss after giving up two runs on one hit and tallied one strikeout.
In game two, Defiance scored two runs in the top of the first inning highlighted by a RBI-double by Warren who would later come around to score on a wild pitch to give the Jackets an early 2-0 lead.
Heidelberg evened the game at 2-2 with two runs of its own in the bottom of the second and then took the lead with a run in the third making the score 3-2.
The back-and-forth pace continued in the fifth when DC plated a run on a RBI-single by sophomore Jordan Osborne (Delaware/Rutherford B. Hayes) that was set up by a lead-off triple by senior Emily Denhard (Troy, Mich./Kolbe Academy) to begin the inning.
With the score tied at 3-3 heading into the seventh inning, it was Defiance who took advantage of its final at-bats as the Jackets crossed home plate four times that included a RBI-single by sophomore Jackie Hartman (Parma/Padua Franciscan) and back-to-back RBI-doubles by junior Haley Patty (Bradford) and sophomore Michaela Bauer (Hicksville) making the score 7-3.
Heidelberg began its half of the seventh with a walk and would later end up with runners on first and second base, but with two outs. The game would then end on a lineout preserving the four-run victory for the Jackets.
Defiance had 10 hits in the nightcap led by Osborne who went a perfect three-of-three with a pair of runs scored and a RBI. Warren and Patty rounded out the multi-hitters with a pair of hits each. Warren went two-of-three in addition to two runs scored and a RBI. Patty went two-of-four and also scored a run to go along with a RBI.
Freshman Sydney Zeuch (Mason/Mount Notre Dame) started on the mound for Defiance and pitched four complete innings giving up three runs, two earned, on seven hits. Kaya came on to replace Zeuch and pitched the final three innings to claim the win after giving up no runs and just two hits.
Defiance is scheduled to host Olivet (Mich.) College in a non-conference doubleheader on Wednesday, Mar. 22 at Sal Hench Field. The first game is scheduled to begin at 3:30 p.m.