Crushing the Crimson Tide: Mercy rule invoked after three innings

Scoring 11 runs in the first inning, the Pioneers cruised to a 15-0 victory today over Columbia. They succeeded in hitting throughout the lineup as they tallied nine singles, three doubles, and two triples on the day.
Bri Garber connects with the ball to start a rally in the first inning that brought 11 runs home
Bri Garber began the rally for the Pioneers with a bunt single down the first base line. Jordyn Kondras and Hanna Garber quickly added two singles of their own. Delaney Baker followed with a walk, and Jordan Weaver drove in Garber and Baker with a double to right center. With four runs on the board Caroline Braungard settled for a walk. Back-to-back doubles from Kylie Weaver and Bri Garber added two more runs. Kondras and Hanna Garber singled again, and a Baker triple sent them both home. Jordan Weaver singled to left field allowing Baker to score the last run of the attack.

The bottom of the second inning served  as another opportunity for the Pioneers to add to their lead. Starting with a single from Braungard, the team took advantage of Kylie Weaver’s infield single and a few Tide errors to tack three more runs onto their lead. Hanna Garber then hit a triple, but a groundout to shortstop ending the inning before she could reach home.
Natalie Carson pitched for the Pioneers and held her own
for three innings, preventing Columbia from scoring

Entering the last half of the third inning and in need of one run to invoke a mercy rule, the Pioneers loaded the bases as Kate Rohrer singled, Zay Rodriguez got hit by a pitch, and Braungard walked. Kylie Weaver’s hard ground ball to short proved to be too difficult a play for Columbia to get the force at the four. Rohrer crossed the plate to put the fifteenth and final run on the board.

“That game was super cool,” Rohrer says of the win and sends a shout out to her fellow outfielders by adding “#muchlove.”

Not to be overlooked is the defensive play of the Pioneers. Through the three innings of defense the Pioneers showed their ability to make key plays. Diving catches from both Jordan Weaver in left field and Kylie Weaver behind the plate kept Columbia from gaining momentum. Natalie Carson earned the win in the circle and allowed one hit.

The Pioneers now move back into section play as they prepare to take on Northern Lebanon on Friday.

--Robin Feaster, Softball Reporter; Photos by Lauren Mast, Director of Sports Photography

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