MITCHELL, S.D. – After being delayed due to rain a week ago, the Dakota Wesleyan University softball team picked up two crucial Great Plains Athletic Conference victories at home against Briar Cliff University. DWU won the first game 10-6 and took the final game of the day, 3-2 Tuesday at Dr. McWhirter Field in Mitchell.
The first one and a third innings were played last Wednesday in Sioux Falls before being called off due to rain. With Briar Cliff leading 6-3, the Tigers (9-23, 4-8 GPAC) looked to cut into the deficit.
DWU did just that as errors by the Chargers (7-20, 2-10 GPAC) allowed two runs to come home. Later in the third frame, Andriana Sprakel (Yankton, S.D.) tallied an RBI single to tie the game. Two batters later, Amber Budmark (Sacramento, Calif.) added another run with an RBI single of her own. Karly Severance (Las Vegas, Nev.) capped off the inning with a three-run homerun to give the Tigers a 10-6 lead.
Alyson VanderPol (Mitchell, S.D.) continued to work on the mound as she kept the Briar Cliff offense at bay for the remainder of the game, helping the Tigers the victory.
Severance led the way as she finished 2-for-4 with four RBIs, a homerun and two runs scored. Stephanie Gabel (Sioux Falls, S.D.) went 1-for-3 with two RBIs, as Budmark finished 1-for-4 with an RBI and two runs scored. VanderPol picked up the win on the rubber as she pitched six frames, striking out two batters and only allowing one run.
After VanderPol began the second game by getting the opening three batters out, the Chargers were able to tack on a run in the second inning with a sacrifice flyout to left field. Briar Cliff took a 2-0 lead in the fourth inning after a solo shot homerun extended their advantage.
The Tigers cut the deficit in half in the bottom of the inning as a passed ball allowed for a run to score. One inning later, VanderPol knocked a shot into shallow left field, bringing home a pair of runs to give DWU a 3-2 lead.
With senior Sierra Haage (Sioux Falls, S.D.) closing on the mound, the Tigers finished out the game with six-straight outs, giving them the series sweep.
VanderPol went 1-for-2 with two RBIs, while Sprakel finished 2-for-2, as Severance and Chaydon Metzger (Larchwood, Iowa) each went 1-for-3. Haage pitched three and a third innings as she struck out four batters and did not allow a run in the win.
The Tigers battle Hastings College at 8 p.m. on Saturday and Doane University at 11 a.m. Sunday for conference doubleheaders in Aberdeen, S.D.