ORLANDO, FLA. – A .388 team batting average highlighted by 45 hits, five doubles, five home runs and 32 runs scored lifted Manchester University to a 2-2 record over four games Sunday and Monday, March 18 and 19.
Opening a 10-game, six-day stay in central Florida, Coach Josh Dzurick's crew powered past SUNY-New Paltz 12-8 and Elmhurst College of Illinois 13-2 in five innings. Williams College of Massachusetts stopped the Black and Gold 8-1, while National Fastpitch Coaches Association top-25 ranked UW-Oshkosh held them off 12-6 in the other two contests to start the spring break games.
Big innings keyed the triumphs. MU tallied eight in the seventh versus New Paltz and 11 in the second against Elmhurst. Five run-scoring hits sparked the eight-run comeback that overturned an 8-4 deficit in Sunday's second game, while a similar recipe led to the results in Monday's second match-up with senior second baseman Laurren Ladwig (Crown Point, Ind.) and freshman catcher/infielder Alexis Mokos (St. John, Ind.) blasting home runs in the frame.
Ladwig's three home runs and stratospheric .615 batting and 1.385 slugging percentage topped the span's numbers. Sophomore designated player Makenzi Nyland (Avon, Ind.) wasn't far behind (.533 batting average/eight hits), and junior catcher Sydney Thompson (Logansport, Ind.) tallied five safeties, including a home run, to drive in six runs over the four games. Senior pitcher Madisyn Walter (Hanna, Ind.) went 1-1, earning the victory against Elmhurst, to lead the way in the circle.
MU's trip continues with three consecutive doubleheaders Wednesday through Friday, March 21-23. They return home to take on St. Mary's College of Indiana in a twin bill scheduled for Monday, March 26.