Curtis Meyer reporter
Gorilla softball is in the middle of a hot streak, winning four games this weekend as part of a 12-game winning streak. Despite losing 6 of their first nine games, the Gorillas haven’t lost in almost a month. The Gorillas open conference play in the following weeks, marking the most important part of their schedule.
“I think it gives us a lot of confidence going into next weekend since it’s conference. Hopefully the players are just feeling good, we are being a cohesive team and gelling at the right time. I think it’s exciting and it feels good,” said head coach Jenny Fuller.
This week, Pitt State hosted the MIAA/GLVC Crossover, with four Great Lakes Valley Conference teams playing in Pittsburg. Pitt State played against Missouri S & T on Saturday, March 4th, in a tight pitcher’s duel.
Junior Hannah Harrison pitched for the Gorillas in a 2-0 win over the Miners, outlasting opponent pitcher Bryn Wooldridge. Harrison struck out five batters while only giving up three hits to earn the victory. It was Senior Taylor Lambert who hit a two run double in the fifth inning to give the Gorillas the winning runs.
Following this victory, the Gorillas played again that same afternoon, against the Truman State Bulldogs. The Gorillas found their swing right away in the bottom of the first, when Junior Kylee Bohle hit a two run double off the left wall.
Truman State cut the lead to 2-1 with an RBI single in the top of the third, but Pitt State answered right back with a lone homer by Junior Paxton Hayes. Pitt State cracked the game wide open in the fourth, with a homer by Junior Kianna Pellegrino, a wild pitch that let Junior Kadyn Trochim score, and Junior Gabby Schultz hitting a single up the middle to score two more.
Up 7-1, the Gorillas allowed a run with a hit batter while bases were loaded in the top of the fifth. A ground ball double play kept the score at 7-2 after Harrison came in relief. Senior Keelah Griffith got the scoring started in the fifth with an RBI single, while Lambert followed with an infield single to get senior Kori Stonestreet in. With bases loaded, Schultz hit a line drive single to end it by run rule, 10-2.
“It feels good. We just come out every day and we just take it one game at a time and try not to think about the wins too much. We just try to have fun,” said Schultz.
Following this performance, the Gorillas played the Rockhurst Hawks the next afternoon. The Hawks got off to a quick start, going up 5-1, with the lone Gorilla run coming from an RBI single by Junior Grace Sullivan.
Pitt State battled back, with an RBI single by freshman Heather Arnett, followed by a three-run homer by Junior Paxtyn Hayes. Tied back up at five, Rockhurst took the lead in the fourth, but Griffith scored thanks to a couple of errors with the next at bat. Pitt State scored six unanswered runs to close out the game behind strong performances behind Lambert, Trochim, and Schultz.
The Gorillas played the Hawks again later that same evening, winning 8-6 in a game where they always held the lead. Griffith hit a two run double to give the Gorillas an early lead, but the Hawks scored a single homer to make it 2-1.
Schultz hit her second homer of the day to give Pitt State a 3-1 lead before the Hawks tied it up in the next inning. Pitt State scored four runs in the bottom of the fourth, retaking the lead on a three-run single by Schultz. Rockhurst brought it to within one in the sixth, but Bohle got one more run in off an RBI single to cushion the lead.
Pitt State is now 14-6 on the season and will play at Lincoln University next weekend to open conference play.
“Next week we will start our regular season conference schedule. This is when it really matters, this is the most important part of our season,” said Fuller.