The McPherson College softball team closed its 2018 nonconference slate with a doubleheader sweep of Central Christian College Thursday afternoon at the CCC Softball Field.
The Bulldogs (17-13) overcame a 7-0 deficit to take game one, 11-9, in nine innings, then blasted the Tigers (6-26), 20-1, in five innings in game two.
Game 1 --- McPherson 11, Central Christian 9 (9 innings)
Central Christian sprinted out to a 5-0 lead after one inning behind a grand slam home run from Altavia Hall and a Karina Flores RBI single off McPherson starter Katy Wilson.
After stranding a pair of runners in the second, the Tigers tacked on another run off Wilson in the third as Hall scored on a Taylor Bourne RBI single. That marked the end of Wilson's day as Christie Betker came on in relief with two outs and got out of the inning with a fly-out left.
Cheyanne Sales rapped an RBI single in the fourth to extend the CCC lead to 7-0.
McPherson finally broke through in the fifth, plating four runs on four hits and an error. Kylecia Taylor scored on a Chelsea Conrad sacrifice fly to put the Bulldogs on the board. Maile Deutsch followed with a two-run single up the middle, then scored on a Ali Smith RBI single through the right side.
The Bulldogs tied the game with three runs in the sixth as Taylor drove in Taylor Hires-Caulk with an RBI single then scored on an RBI single up the middle by Conrad. Conrad scored the game-tying run from third when Jenna Christensen reached on an error.
Both teams stranded two runners in their next at-bats and the Tigers left Altavia Hall at second base after a leadoff single in the bottom of the seventh to send the game to extra innings.
In the eighth, Jessica Jones scored on a Deutsch sacrifice fly only to be matched by an RBI bunt single from Central Christian in the bottom half of the inning.
McPherson burst ahead with three runs in the ninth as Smith scored on a Taylor RBI single up the middle. Destiny Bacon scored on the same play as the ball was misplayed in the outfield. Taylor later scored on a Taylor Perez sacrifice fly.
The Tigers got one run back in the bottom of the ninth as Cheyann Sales scored on a Hall RBI double to left. Hall moved up to third on a groundout but was stranded there as Betker struck out the next two batters to end the game.
Betker picked up the win, striking out eight while scattering seven hits in 6 1/3 innings of relief of Wilson. Wilson had two strikeouts in 2 2/3 innings.
Taylor led McPherson with three hits, scored three times and drove in a pair. Deutsch had two hits and three RBIs, while Conrad added two hits and two RBIs. Hires-Caulk also went 2-for-4 with a pair of doubles.
Kasi Kraus struck out four while allowing 14 hits and walking two in a complete-game loss.
Hall had four hits, five RBIs and two runs scored to lead Central Christian. Gianca Holmes added three hits and two runs scored, while Morgan Hildebrandt had two hits and an RBI.
Both teams had 14 hits.
Game 2 --- McPherson 20, Central Christian 1 (5 innings)
McPherson blasted 15 hits and took advantage of six Central Christian errors to complete the sweep with a five-inning win in game two.
The Bulldogs scored four runs with two outs in the first inning. Deutsch scored on a Christensen RBI single. After a hit batsman and a walk loaded the bases, Hires-Caulk emptied them with a three-run double down the right-field line.
The Tigers scratched out a run in the bottom half of the inning, Kraus led off the frame with a single down the left-field line then scored on a Jessica Aldana RBI double to right-center.
McPherson extended the lead to 8-1 in the second as Christensen and Bacon each rapped two-run singles.
After retiring Central Christian in order in the second, the Bulldogs exploded for six runs in the top of the third. Christensen hit a bases-clearing three-run double down the left-field line then scored on a Bacon RBI double to left-center. Smith crossed on a wild pitch and Hires-Caulk capped the inning with an RBI double to score Bacon.
McPherson added three runs in both the fourth and fifth innings. Taylor had an RBI single in the fourth, while Conrad scored on a fielder's choice and Valerie Romero hit a two-run single in the fifth.
Sydney Lang picked up the win in the circle, striking out seven while allowing one run on three hits in five innings of work.
Christensen went 3-for-3 with three hits and six RBIs, while Hires-Caulk added three hits - including two doubles - and five RBIs and Bacon went 3-for-3 with three RBIs and a pair of runs scored.
Jones, Conrad and Bacon all scored three runs apiece with Jones adding a pair of hits and two stolen bases.
Aldana had two hits - including a double - to lead Central Christian.
Christensen's six RBIs are the most in a single game for a Bulldog player since Amanda Gray drove in six on March 3, 2009 - also against Central Christian.
The Bulldogs return to Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference (KCAC) play Saturday afternoon with a doubleheader in Winfield, Kansas, against Southwestern College. First pitch for game one is slated for 1 p.m.