Sampson & Kobza Pace Doane in Sweep

Doane picked up a sweep of Northwestern College on Saturday afternoon in Crete to improve to 9-5 in the GPAC softball race. Doane won the first game, 6-1, and held on in game two for a 6-4 win.

Game One
Northwestern manufactured a run in the first inning following a lead-off infield single by Rachel Harris. A passed ball allowed Harris to move to second base and a sacrifice but put Harris at third base. Kala Kuhlmann added a second sacrifice bunt to score the run to give the Red Raiders a 1-0 lead.

Doane came back in the third inning as they scored six runs off of Kuhlmann. Gina Falciani singled to lead off the inning and moved to second on a single by Jennifer Liddell. The Tigers pulled off a double steal with Falciani and Kelsie Holtus, as she ran for Liddell. Kayla Hochstein followed with a single to plate a pair of runs to give the Tigers the lead.

Whitney Poole reached on a fielder's choice as Hochstein was tagged out on the base paths and Poole advanced to third base on a pair of stolen bases. Her steal of third base was the 100th of her career. She came around to score on a throwing error as Kroese reached and advanced to second. Kroese followed with a steal of third base.

Christy Kobza picked up a RBI single for the Tigers to plate Kroese. Brooke Sampson reached on an error and both runners moved up a bag on a groundout. Jennifer Montoya delivered a two-run, two-out single to close out the inning as Doane took a 6-1 lead.

Northwestern had one big opportunity over the remaining four innings to cut into the Tiger lead. In the sixth, the Red Raiders loaded the bases on two hits and a walk but Tiger starter Megan Wingate closed the door and kept Northwestern off the board.

Katy Jones threw the final inning for Doane, allowing one walk while striking out one. The Tiger pitching staff worked out of several jams as the Red Raiders left 10 runners on base over the seven innings.

Montoya went 2-for-3 for the Tigers with two RBIs in the game. Hochstein was 1-for-3 with two RBIs. Doane was held in check for the majority of the game, finishing with six hits. Five hits, aided by two Northwestern errors, keyed the six-run, third inning.

Game Two
The Tigers rallied in the second game and posted 13 hits in the process. Northwestern scored a pair of late runs to put some pressure on the Tigers but Doane held on for the sweep.

Whitney Poole led off the bottom of the first inning with a double and scored on a Christy Kobza single to right field. Brooke Sampson and Deidre Cardoza added singles to load the bases but the Tigers were unable to cash in and left three runners on base.

Northwestern fought back in the third inning to take the lead with two runs. A lead-off triple and sacrifice fly tied the game. Following back-to-back singles to put runners at the corners, Shelby Johnson grounded out but plated Kami Kuhlmann. The Red Raiders also had a chance to add more runs, leaving two runners on base.

Doane responded back in the bottom of the third with three runs. Following a ground out, Kobza singled and came around to score on a two-run home run by Sampson. Following a pitching change, Jennifer Montoya hit a ground-rule double. Kelsie Holtus ran for Montoya and came in to score on a single by Amber Stater to give the Tigers a 4-2 lead.

In the bottom of the fourth, Doane added two more runs to build a 6-2 lead. Hochstein led off the inning with a single and moved to second on a sacrifice bunt. Kroese reached on an error to put a pair of runners on for Kobza. She delivered with a single to plate Hochstein and move Kroese into third base. Kobza stole second base to put two runners in scoring position for Sampson. She delivered with a single to plate Kroese to score the second run of the inning. Montoya followed with a walk but Doane left the bases loaded as they were unable to bring in another run with less than two outs.

Northwestern battled back in the sixth with a pair of unearned runs. With two outs, Stephanie Van Duyn reached on a throwing error by Montoya. Rachel Harris walked and both runners came in to score on a triple by Heidi Esdohr. Jennifer Liddell, pitching out of the bullpen, was able to get a groundout to end the inning.

Jenna Alswager picked up the win, throwing four innings and allowing two runs on six hits while striking out two. Liddell picked up the three-inning save, allowing two unearned runs on three hits.

Sampson paced the Tigers by going 4-for-4 with three RBIs and a run scored. Kobza went 3-for-3 with two RBIs and a run scored.