March 03, 202412345RHE
Bowling Green40000441
Win: Kowalski (1-5) 4.210053
Loss: ANDERSON (0-3) 2.076610
Krug (VALPO) 313410

March 03, 202412345RHE
Win: Brianna Copeland (8-3) 4.020036
Loss: McDermott (3-6) 1.146640
Hecker (VALPO) 201000
Wilson (VALPO) 201000
Avery Parker (IU) 323401
Softball Run-Rules Bowling Green on Final Day of Hoosier Classic
Sunday, March 3, 2024
Softball Run-Rules Bowling Green on Final Day of Hoosier Classic
Caitlyn Kowalski tossed 4.2 innings of one-hit relief in the win over BGSU.

The Valpo softball team exploded offensively on Sunday morning, putting 22 runners on base in just five innings in a 12-4 run-rule victory over Bowling Green to kick off its final day of action at the Hoosier Classic in Bloomington, Ind. The Beacons’ bats were stymied by IU All-American Brianna Copeland in the tournament finale, as Valpo fell 10-0 to the hosts.

How It Happened – Bowling Green

  • Batting as the visiting team, Valpo wasted no time putting the scoreboard to work Sunday morning. Senior Kayla Skapyak (Macomb, Mich./Dakota) led off the game with a single. Two batters later, sophomore Kim Rodas (San Bernardino, Calif./Cajon) drove a double to the left-center gap to plate Skapyak and give the Beacons the lead.
  • Following a walk to freshman Kayden Krug (Milford, Ohio/Mount Notre Dame), senior Regi Hecker (Lee’s Summit, Mo./Blue Springs South) stepped in and knocked a shot to the wall in right-center, bringing home both Rodas and Krug as the Beacons led 3-0 after their first turn at the plate.
  • BGSU turned the tables in the bottom of the first, pushing four runs across the plate to take a 4-3 lead.
  • The Beacons responded immediately in the top of the second. An infield single by sophomore Kam Utendorf (Columbus Grove, Ohio/Columbus Grove [Black Hawk College]) scored classmate Lyna Vasquez (Moreno Valley, Calif./Valley View), who had singled to lead off the frame.
  • Later in the inning, Krug stepped in with runners on second and third and two outs and delivered, knocking both runs in with a two-run single which gave Valpo a 6-4 lead.
  • The Beacons extended the lead in the third. Hecker walked to lead off the frame and eventually came around to score on an RBI single from senior Emily Crompton (Salem, Ill./Christ Our Rock Lutheran).
  • The lead was still just 7-4 with two on and two outs in the top of the fifth before six consecutive Beacons reached base to put the game in run-rule territory. Senior Alexis Johnson (Schererville, Ind./Lake Central) and Krug delivered matching two-run singles to make it 11-4, and later in the frame, freshman Cici Wilson (St. Charles, Ill./St. Charles East) drew a bases-loaded walk to push the lead to the necessary eight runs.
  • Senior Caitlyn Kowalski (Temperance, Mich./Notre Dame Academy) took care of things in the circle in the bottom of the frame to close out the run-rule win, setting the side down in order — including striking out each of the last two hitters.

How It Happened – Indiana

  • Indiana opened the scoring with a single run in the bottom of the first.
  • Valpo looked poised to tie or take the lead in the top of the second, loading the bases with nobody out on two singles and a walk. But Copeland registered a pair of strikeouts around a fielder’s choice grounder which forced the runner at the plate to keep the Beacons off the board.
  • IU recorded a pair of three-run homers in the bottom of the second and another three-run homer in the fourth to account for the remainder of the scoring.

Inside the Games

  • The run-rule win over Bowling Green was the program’s first run-rule win since closing the 2022 regular season with a 10-0 win over Evansville.
  • Combined with its 13-11 win over Morehead State back on Feb. 16, this year’s team is the first Valpo squad to score a dozen or more runs twice in the same season since the 2019 team beat Delaware State 12-1 and Wagner 13-0 in early-season action.
  • With 22 runners reaching base against BGSU Sunday morning, the offensive lines up and down the lineup impressed. Perhaps the most impressive was that of the rookie Krug, who went 3-for-3 with a walk and four RBIs.
  • Krug was one of two freshmen to reach base in all four of her plate appearances, but the other did so in unusual fashion. Wilson was hit by a pitch in each of her first three times at the plate before working the bases-loaded walk in the fifth inning, making her officially 0-for-0 with an RBI in the win over the Falcons.
  • Dating back to at least 1999, Wilson is the first Valpo player to be hit by a pitch three times in a single game.
  • Krug was one of three Beacons to have a multi-hit game against BGSU, as the top two spots in the Valpo order did so as well. Skapyak went 2-for-3 with a walk and two runs scored out of the leadoff spot, while right behind her, Johnson finished 2-for-4 with two runs scored, two RBIs and two stolen bases.
  • With her pair of swipes, Johnson now owns an MVC-best nine steals on the season.
  • Hecker finished the win over BGSU 1-for-2 with two walks, a run scored and two RBIs. Rodas and Utendorf both scored a pair of runs in the victory as well.
  • Kowalski enjoyed a stellar relief outing to earn her first win of the season, throwing 4.2 innings of one-hit, shutout ball.
  • Valpo was limited to two hits in the tournament finale against IU. Ironically, one of those base knocks came from Wilson after her 0-for-0 line in the opener, while Hecker also picked up a base hit.
  • Rodas did not have an official at bat against the Hoosiers, drawing walks in both of her plate appearances.
  • Freshman Sydney McDermott (Stout, Ohio/Portsmouth West) took the loss against IU, starting and going the first 1.1 innings.

Next Up

Valpo (5-13) closes out pre-conference action this coming week at Omaha’s Connie Claussen Classic. The Beacons will play five games in three days, starting with a matchup against the host Mavs Thursday afternoon at 3 p.m.