By: Abbey Lipcsik
TUCSON, Ariz. – The Hiram College softball team split their fourth pair of games in their fourth day of play at the Tucson Invitational.
Hiram fell short in game one, dropping a 9-2 decision against Aquinas.
The Terriers redeemed themselves in game two, prevailing 11-10 over Newbury College. The win marked the second of the season over the Nighthawks.
The Hiram offense was key in their victory over Newbury. Five Terriers finished the game with multiple hits. Kourtney Holcomb and Nikki Budner followed with three. Makenzie Dombrowski, Acton and Call also added two apiece.
The Terriers opened the scoring in the top of the first inning, striking for a pair of runs. Following two quick outs, Holcomb tallied her first triple of the season. Oles then successfully pulled off a squeeze play, bunting with the infield back to give the Terriers the lead. Following a walk to Acton, Call doubled to right center, scoring Oles to extend the advantage to 2-0.
The Nighthawks responded by cutting the lead in half in the bottom of the second inning. Hiram, however would tack on two more in the third to push the advantage to 4-1.
Holcomb and Acton were once again in the middle of the action as Holcomb led off the inning with a single. Two batters later, Acton tallied her first triple of the year, bringing in Holcomb. Call then singled home Acton to push the lead to three.
The Terriers would add two more runs in the top of the fourth inning as Dombrowski scored on an error and Oles tallied a sacrifice fly to score Budner and make the lead 6-2.
Newbury would storm back with a three-run frame in the bottom of the fifth inning to cut the Hiram lead to 6-5.
Hiram added five more runs between the sixth and seventh innings to blow the advantage open to 11-5.
In the sixth inning, the big hit of the frame came on the first pitch, as Budner crushed her first-career home run, and the first of the season for Hiram, over the left field fence, giving the Terriers a 7-2 lead.
Other runs in the sixth were tallied as Holcomb scored on an error, and Call tallied a sacrifice fly to drive in Dana Perrotta.
Brooklynn Grein scored one of the two runs in the Terrier seventh on an error by the Nighthawks' short stop, which was immediately followed by a RBI single from Acton, scoting Budner to push the advantage to six.
Hiram would need the entire, six run cushion, as Newbury tallied five runs in the bottom of the seventh.
With the Terriers needing just one out, and the tying run at the plate, Hiram looked to Brittany Zajac to close the door. After giving up a pair of baserunners, Zajac forced a fly ball to end the game, and preserve the win for Hiram.
Offensively, Budner and Holcomb combined to finish the game 6-for-10 with six runs scored. Call posted a team-high three RBIs, while Oles and Acton added two, apiece.
Along with her RBIs, Call also tallied her first-career win in the circle, while Zajac picked up the first save of her career.
The Terriers will be back in action on Friday as they compete in their final day of the Tucson Invitational. Hiram is scheduled to take on Olivet Nazarene and Lawrence Tech in games that are scheduled for 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. eastern time.