Salukis split doubleheader with Purple Aces

By Brent Meske, @brentmeskeDE

SIU softball (14-22-1, 8-8) traveled to Evansville (10-33, 2-15) on Wednesday for a midweek doubleheader and came away with a win and a loss against the Missouri Valley Conference’s worst team.

Senior Katie Bertelsen (12-12) dominated game one with a complete game 2-0 shutout of the Purple Aces, who averaged 4.2 runs a game coming in. Bertelsen finished with 5 hits, 3 strikeouts and 2 walks in the victory. 

Senior center fielder Kalyn Harker put the Salukis ahead two batters into the game with her first home run of the season. Scoring stayed stagnant on each side until the seventh inning when sophomore first baseman Shaye Harre hit her second home run of the year.

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In game two, the Aces got a solo home run from sophomore designated player Danielle Freeman to take an early 1-0 lead in the first inning. They added to their lead in the fourth inning with an RBI triple from freshman first baseman Morgan Lambert to score senior right fielder Abbi Fahse, who reached with a single.

Harre, pitching, was pulled in favor of freshman Savanna Dover after the Lambert triple and neither pitcher got the decision in the game. Harre finished with 2 runs allowed on 5 hits, 3 walks and 1 strikeout in 3 innings pitched. 

SIU got the runs back with RBIs from Harre and sophomore left fielder Merri Anne Patterson in the top of the fifth inning. 

In the sixth inning, Harre collected two more RBIs on a 2-out single to give the Salukis their first lead of the game. She finished the game 3-for-3 with 3 RBIs and 1 walk. 

The Aces answered back in the seventh inning with a walk and a single, prompting coach Kerri Blaylock to pull Dover in favor of Bertelsen for the save attempt.

Dover finished the game with 2 runs on 2 hits, 4 walks and 1 strikeout through 3 innings. 

Evansville added 3 runs in the bottom half of the inning to win the game on a sophomore center fielder Courtney Land 2-RBI single. 

Bertelsen suffered the loss with 1 run on 2 hits. 

The Salukis play Austin Peay State (8-26) at 3 p.m. Thursday in Clarksville, Tenn.

Brent Meske can be reached at [email protected] or at 536-3311 ext. 269. 

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