San Antonio - The Trinity softball team completed its regular-season home campaign with a Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference doubleheader sweep of Austin College on Sunday afternoon.
"I thought today was really great, and everybody got a chance to play," said Head Coach Brandi Crnkovic. "Everyone did their job at the plate. I thought it was a great way to honor our seniors on their last regular-season home game. I’m excited that we came out and played well. Kaci has been pitching really well this year. I knew she was getting close to the record last week, and I didn't want to tell her, but I think she already knew."
The Tigers won the opening game 9-1, followed by a 12-1 win in the weekend series finale. Each game was called after five innings due to a run-rule. Trinity won Saturday’s DH with the Kangaroos, and now stands at 24-10 overall, and 17-3 in conference play. Austin College dropped to 13-23 and 3-17 after Sunday’s losses.
Sunday’s opener was a milestone game for senior pitcher Kaci Wellik, who tied Trinity’s all-time career record for victories. Wellik now has 46 wins in her column, tying the mark set by Erin Mulvey from 2005-2007.
Wellik pitched four shutout innings, improving her season record to 12-5. She allowed just two hits, and struck out five batters to reach a career-best 104 strikeouts this season. The versatile Wellik also aided the offensive cause by scoring two runs. Sabrina Nieto made her career debut from the pitching circile, striking out two players in the final inning of the game.
Trinity opened with a two-run first inning, added four more runs in the third, and never looked back. Destinee Davis smacked two-RBI hits in both the third and fourth innings, finishing the game 2-2 with four RBI. Hilary Hoffman went 2-4 at the plate, and nine different Tiger players had hits in the opener.
Game two was scoreless until the third inning, and it was Austin College that got on the board first. The 'Roos grabbed their first lead of the weekend after scoring on a throwing error. Trinity answered immediately by scoring four times in the bottom of the inning, then blasted eight hits to score eight runs in the fourth, and effectively end the game.
Davis was outstanding once again, going 2-3 with two doubles, as well as scoring two runs. On the day, Davis went 4-5 at the plate, with five RBI, three runs, and three doubles. Hailey Wilson batted 3-3 in game two, with two RBI and two runs scored. Nieto hit 2-3 with three RBI, and Stephanie Crumrine also batted 2-3. Siera Spurlock was a 2-2 hitter, and also produced two of the Tigers runs.
"We really came through hitting today," said Davis after the wins. "The whole team, all around, was just hitting well and coming together. We were getting hits, even with two outs, and just bringing in runs. We had four good games this series, and hopefully we can come out strong next week. For me, getting ready for conference is mainly mental. I’m trying to change things mentally, and be more positive, both at the plate and in the outfield."
Senior pitcher Katie Castillon got the pitching victory, and improved to 6-1. Castillon hurled for the five innings, and struck out four players.
Following the second game, a seniors tribute was held for Wellik, Castillon, Ariel Wilks, and Emily Fleischman.
Next up for the Tigers will be a trip to nearby Seguin, Texas, and two doubleheaders with third-ranked and defending SCAC champion Texas Lutheran University. Friday’s first game starts at 5:00 p.m., and Saturday’s opener is at 1:00 p.m.
"We play TLU next week, and they are going to be tough competition," concluded Coach Crnkovic. "They are a really good team, ranked third right now. I think they will be tough games. I think if we come out and play our hardest, we will always have a chance to win."