Softball Splits Pair with Newman in Wichita, Strand Produces 6-RBI Day

FHSU Sports Information Department

WICHITA, Kan. – Fort Hays State earned a doubleheader split with Newman University on Tuesday (Mar. 7). After falling 8-7 in eight innings in the first game, the Tigers picked up their first true road win of the season with a 10-1 run-rule win in game two. FHSU is now 6-12 overall, while Newman moved to 4-19 overall.

Game 1: Newman 8, Fort Hays State 7

Newman seems to have a thing about walk-offs in Wichita against FHSU in recent years and did it again in the first game of the doubleheader. The Jets won 8-7 in eight innings on a single that scored a run from second. It was the fourth walk-off win for Newman in the last five games played between the teams in Wichita after accomplishing the feat twice last year and once in 2014.

The Tigers nearly vaulted into the lead, producing a three-run top of the seventh to get the game tied at 7-7. Bailey Boxberger got the scoring started in the seventh with an RBI single. Then Kylie Strand, who enjoyed a big day all together at the plate, tied the game with a one-out 2-RBI double. Unfortunately, three batters later she was thrown out trying to score on a single by Bailey Kennedy that kept the game tied.

With one runner on and two outs, Newman found a way to produce back-to-back singles and plate the winning run in the eighth.

It was another frustrating loss after the Tigers took an early 3-0 lead in the first thanks to RBI from Veronica Knittig, Candace Bollig, and Tess Gray. But starting pitcher Hailey Chapman ran into trouble in the middle innings, giving up seven runs on eight hits over the third and fourth innings. A run scored on a wild pitch for the Tigers in the sixth brought them within three before getting the game tied in the seventh.

Game 2: Fort Hays State 10, Newman 1

Kylie Strand’s 2-RBI double in the seventh-inning rally of game one was just the start of her big run-producing day at the plate. Strand, Tess Gray, and Bailey Boxberger did the majority of the run-producing damage in a six-inning run-rule win for FHSU in game two.

Strand bopped a pair of two-run home runs in the game, capping a 4-for-5 day at the plate with six RBI total in the doubleheader, with four in game two. Gray, who finished the doubleheader with four RBI, produced three on a bases-clearing double in the six-run Tiger sixth. Strand followed that knock with her second homer of the game. Boxberger was key as well with two RBI in the game, helping the Tigers to an early 2-0 lead in the first with a sacrifice fly, and then an RBI single that started the rally in the sixth. Candace Bollig had the other RBI in the game with a bases-loaded walk in the first inning.

Amid the game two fireworks at the plate, Carrie Clarke settled in for a complete game win in the pitching circle. She allowed six hits and four walks with two strikeouts. Clarke allowed the only run in the second and used a bases-loaded double play to escape Newman’s biggest threat in the game. She is now 2-2 on the season.

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