Pfeiffer Softball Advances to ECAC Semifinals With a 7-0 Win at Franciscan
Steubenville, Ohio (May 8, 2019) – In the first round of the 2019 ECAC Softball Championship on Wednesday afternoon, the third-seeded Pfeiffer University defeated the sixth-seeded Franciscan University 7-0 to advance to the semifinals.
The Falcons were led by Kiana Millisaps (Taylorsville, N.C.) who earned her 26th win of the season, while going six innings allowing just one hit (double) and striking out three. The right-hander didn't allow a run or a walk in the contest. This was her 14th game this season where she didn't allow a run of any kind.
Pfeiffer (34-7) got on the board in the bottom half of the first as it tallied a run on three hits, while leaving two left on base. With one down in the frame, freshman Alexis Walter (Taylorsville, N.C.) doubled to the right-center field gap then advanced to third on a groundout by junior Makenzie Pennell (Taylorsville, N.C). Walter later scored on a wild pitch.
In the bottom of the fourth, Pfeiffer added another run on an infield bases loaded single to third by Walter, scoring freshman pinch runner Kayla Miller (Shallotte, N.C.). The Falcons recorded two hits, a walk and error in the frame to push the lead to, 2-0.
The Falcons tacked on two more runs in the bottom of the fifth on a pair hits and two errors. Millisaps got things started with a walk then advanced to second on throwing error by the right fielder with one down. Sophomore pinch hitter Reece Davis (Hickory, N.C.) singled to center to put runners on the corners. Davis then stole second putting both runners in scoring position. Sophomore Sarah Bowles (Thomasville, N.C.) drove both runners in as she singled through the left side to make it 4-0 after five.
Pfeiffer put the game out of reach in the bottom of the sixth as Walter doubled to right field to lead off the inning. She later came around to score on Pennell's two-run home run to left center to make it 6-0 with no outs. This forced Franciscan to make a pitching change as sophomore Andi Queen entered in relief. The Falcons continued the hit parade as Millisaps singled and then was pinched run for by freshman Hallie Chisholm. Chisholm advanced to third off a double by sophomore Kari Westerbeek (Warsaw, N.C.) before scoring off a single back to the pitcher by Davis to make it, 7-0.
Walter finished the day going 3-for-4 with two doubles, a pair of runs scored and an RBI. Second baseman Pennell finished with a pair of RBIs and a home run for the Falcons. Teammates Millisaps and Davis each tallied a pair of hits and scored a run each, while Davis drove in a run and stole a base.
Franciscan's (24-15) only hit and only base runner of the day came off a double from freshman Chloe Cross, who went 1-for-2. Senior pitcher Amanda Pulice took the loss in the circle as she allowed five runs (three earned) over the 4.1 innings.
Pfeiffer will face the winner of the game between second-seeded Neumann and seventh-seeded Alvernia in the second semifinal on Saturday, May 11 at 3 p.m. on the campus of Penn State-Behrend in Erie, Pa.