The Valpo softball team closed out the Stetson Invitational Sunday afternoon in style, run-ruling the host Hatters by a 12-1 final to finish the weekend with a 2-1 record. Sophomore Peyton Moeder (Shawnee, Kan./Mill Valley) and freshman Ryan Milkowski (Olathe, Kan./Olathe West) represented Valpo on the All-Tournament Team for their work at the top of the batting order.
How It Happened
- Back-to-back big innings early put the game in run rule territory.
- Valpo got the scoring started in the top of the second by putting a five-spot on the board. The first seven batters of the inning reached base to lead to the five runs.
- Moeder, junior Addi Burke (Mesquite, Texas/John Horn) and senior Morgan Matalin (Crown Point, Ind./Crown Point) all had RBI singles in the second inning, while Milkowski drew a bases-loaded walk to score another run and sophomore Taylor Tonoian (Saugus, Calif./Saugus) delivered a sacrifice fly as well.
- After Stetson got on the scoreboard with an unearned run in the bottom of the second, Valpo bettered itself to start off the third, as each of its first eight batters of the frame reached base in a second straight five-run inning.
- The big blow early in the frame was a three-run double off the bat of Matalin. Later in the inning, junior Brittany Anderson (East Chicago, Ind./Bishop Noll) stepped to the plate with the bases loaded and delivered a two-run base hit of her own to push the lead to 10-1.
- While the offense was putting big numbers on the board, senior Jenna Edwards (Winchester, Ky./George Rogers Clark [Chattanooga State C.C.]) was taking care of business in the circle. Outside of the second inning, Edwards retired all eight batters she faced before getting relieved with two outs in the fourth by senior Emily Richardson (Oak Park, Ill./River Forest).
- Valpo capped the scoring with two more runs in the fifth inning, courtesy of a sacrifice fly from freshman Lauren Kehlenbrink (Ballwin, Mo./Parkway South) and a pinch-hit RBI single by sophomore Maddie Henry (Fredericksburg, Va./Stafford).
Inside the Game
- The 12 runs were Valpo’s highest offensive output since a 13-0 victory last season in early March over Wagner.
- The win was Valpo’s first of the run rule variety since downing Charlotte 8-0 last year on March 2.
- Combined with yesterday’s 11-8 win over Bethune-Cookman, Valpo scored 10+ runs in consecutive games for the first time since March 2012, when the Brown and Gold posted 16 runs against Iowa State and 10 apiece against Brown and UTSA in the thin air at UTEP.
- Matalin knocked in four runs with her base hits in the second and third innings, surpassing her previous career single-game high of three. It was the second four-RBI performance by a Valpo batter this year, joining Kehlenbrink’s effort at Gardner-Webb.
- Milkowski drew three walks for the second straight game and scored a pair of runs as well, while Tonoian and sophomore Taylor Herschbach (Lockport, Ill./Lockport Township) each earned two walks. As a team, Valpo drew eight walks and was hit by three pitches one game after setting a program record with 12 bases on balls.
- Matalin was one of four Crusaders to leave the field Sunday with a multi-hit game, as Anderson, Burke and Moeder each tallied two hits apiece as well.
- Edwards needed just 37 pitches in 3.2 innings of work to earn the win and improve to 2-3 this season, as she surrendered just two hits and the sole unearned run. Richardson worked 1.1 shutout innings behind her out of the bullpen to close out the win.
- Valpo picked up a season-high seven hits with runners in scoring position in the win, going 7-of-13 in RISP situations.
- Moeder and Milkowski each earned All-Tournament Team honors for the first time in their respective careers. Moeder went 2-for-6 with three runs scored, three stolen bases and six walks (1.167 OPS), while Milkowski went 2-for-5 with four runs scored, four RBIs and six walks (1.327 OPS).
Valpo (7-6) continues its Spring Break trip to the Sunshine State with a rematch against Stetson in mid-week action Wednesday evening at 5 p.m. CT. Live video and live stats for the matchup with the Hatters will be available via ValpoAthletics.com.