Softball rides win streak into SCAC Championship

Trinity’s softball team finished off the regular season last weekend on a high note as they extended their winning streak to seven games.

The Tigers played away at Southwestern University, winning both games Saturday, April 18.  Sunday’s games were cancelled due to weather.

The softball team got off to a quick lead in game one.  After senior Brittany Haby doubled to start off the inning, senior Lauren Mercado went deep to give Trinity two quick runs.  In the second inning, the Tigers racked up four more runs on four additional hits.  In the fourth inning, Emily Fleischmann and Hilary Hoffman put the game away when they each drove in a run to put Trinity up 8-0.

That was more than enough for starting pitcher Kaci Wellik, who shutout the Pirates in the bottom of the inning to force a run-rule.  Wellik gave up six hits, no walks and three strikeouts, moving her record to 8-6 on the season.

Game two started similarly to how game one ended; Trinity scored six runs on eight hits through the first three innings.

In the bottom of the third  Southwestern put up three that inning, closing the gap to 6-3.  Trinity sophomore outfielder Mackenzie Hill answered back in the fifth with her first collegiate home run.

Southwestern threatened again in the seventh inning, after plating two runs on two hits, but left two players on base to lose 7-5.  Katie Castillon put in a solid pitching performance for the win, allowing two earned runs, seven hits, two walks and three strikeouts.  Castillon got some help from Katie Glomb in the bullpen, as Glomb came in for the save.

Saturday was a great offensive day for the Tigers as 11 of the 13 batters got at least one hit through the two games.  Mackenzie Hill went off for 4-6 with five runs, two RBI, two doubles and a home run.  Hoffman also had a standout day, going 4-6 with one run, five RBI, a triple and a stolen base.

“It was awesome just to be back on the field, honestly,” Hoffman said, who was injured with a mild concussion earlier in the month after taking a wild pitch off the helmet against University of Mary Hardin-Baylor. “Doing as well as I did, and against Southwestern, was just icing on the cake.”

With Saturday’s two wins, the softball team was able to end the regular season on a seven-game winning streak heading into the conference tournament. The Tigers now have a 16-16 record overall and a 10-6 conference record.

“I am so proud of the girls for playing so well over the last few weeks,” said head coach Brandi Crnkovic.  “We have seen our share of adversity throughout this season and I am glad we have been able to overcome.”

The SCAC tournament starts Friday, April 24, in Kerrville, Texas, and goes until Sunday, April 26.

The Tigers play their first game at 6 p.m. on Friday, April 24 against the winner of Dallas versus Schreiner.

Last year, the Tigers finished second in the tournament, losing a tough game to Texas Lutheran University in the Championship game.  Trinity was swept in four games against Texas Lutheran this season.

“We played TLU pretty early on this year and…we were still figuring things out defensively and offensively,” Glomb said. “If we should face them again, we’re going to leave our hearts out on the field.  We’ve been on a streak lately, so if we just play like we have been, we’ll be fine.”