DONALDSON, INDIANA – The Ancilla College softball team picked up a double header split with NJCAA #15 and Michigan Community College Athletic Association (MCCAA) Western Conference leader Muskegon Community College losing the first game 9-6 before winning game two 5-4.
Gretchen Gieseking had a big day for Ancilla, going 6-8 with 8 RBI and hitting 3-4 with 6 RBI with runners in scoring position.
In game one, Ancilla fell behind 1-0 in the top of the third but tied the game in the bottom of the fourth when Gieseking led off the inning with a single, moved to second on a passed ball, and scored one batter later on a Demi Schrader single.
Muskegon came back with three runs in the top of the fifth to take a 4-1 lead. Once again, the Chargers answered and tied the game up in the bottom of the stanza. Courtney Cain led off the inning with a double and moved to third on a Kaitlyn Dick single. After an out was recorded in the inning Cain scored when Kaitlyn Dreibelbis reached base on an error. After Dick and Dreibelbis moved to second and third on another passed ball, Gieseking ripped a 2 RBI single to complete the Ancilla scoring in the inning and tie the game at 4-4.
After a scoreless sixth, Muskegon plated five runners in the top of the seventh to gain a 9-4 lead. As hard as they tried, the Chargers were unable to match that output, being held to a two run home run by Gieseking to finish the game at 9-6.
Ancilla scored the first four runs of the second game. Cassidy Hardesty led off the game with a single to right and moved to second on a Dreibelbis infield single. After an out in the inning, Schrader picked up an RBI with a single to center, giving the Chargers a 1-0 lead after one.
The third inning began much like the first inning for Ancilla when both Hardesty and Dreibelbis led off the inning with singles. With one swing of the bat, the Chargers led 4-0 after Gieseking stepped up to the plate and belted a three run home run.
Muskegon followed with four unanswered runs of their own, scoring single runs in the fourth and fifth and tying the game with two runs in the top of the seventh.
Gieseking’s heroics continued for Ancilla in the bottom of the seventh. Dick led off the inning with a single and moved up one base at a time with successive groundouts from Hardesty and Dreibelbis. Standing on third base with two outs, Dick scored on a Gieseking walk-off single to end the game.
“It’s probably an understatement to say that Gretchen was seeing the ball well today,” started Ancilla coach Scott Reese. “She knew what her job was when she stepped to the plate in the seventh and was patient enough to wait on the pitch she wanted. That inning doesn’t happen without a great team effort. Kaitlyn (Dick) stepped up with a big single to begin the inning and Cass (Hardesty) and Bug (Dreibelbis) were unselfish in their at bats to move her around to third. I’m proud of these girls for sticking with it after having the game tied up in the top of the inning. They didn’t give up and fought hard all day.”
The win is Ancilla’s first since April 5 and just their second in the MCCAA West after starting the season 10-3.
Ancilla finishes their conference season on Thursday and Friday, May 5 and 6 with back-to-back double headers. The Chargers host NJCAA #19 and conference co-leader Kalamazoo Valley Community College (26-4, 18-4 MCCAA) on Thursday and Grand Rapids Community College (15-23, 9-11 MCCAA) on Friday.