Softball sweeps Creighton, splits two-game series with Marist



Kayla Quigley

In their past five games, the Villanova Softball team went 4-1, sweeping the Creighton Bluejays (15-9) and beating the Marist Red Foxes (13-16) in game two of their doubleheader. 

The first game of Villanova’s sweep against Creighton was on April 1, at Villanova’s home field.  

Sophomore Brette Lawrence pitched a shutout for the Wildcats – she successfully retired the first 10 batters before allowing someone on base and only let three hits the entire game.  

The Wildcats supported their pitcher by adding two runs on the boards. Mackenzie Tilles showed her power by hitting her first home run of the season over the fence in left centerfield.  The game would end with the score of 2-0, and the Wildcats adding another “W” to their record. 

The next day, April 2, Villanova competed in a doubleheader against Creighton once again.  Kate Poppe pitched for the Wildcats and registered her third career no-hitter. 

The Wildcats’ bats didn’t come alive until the sixth inning, when Lauren Hershberg hit a double with bases loaded.  She cleared the bases, resulting in a 3-0 lead for the Wildcats.  Sierra McConnell had the last RBI for Villanova with a single to second base. 

Villanova secured the first game of the doubleheader 4-0. 

In the next game, Brette Lawrence once again pitched for the Wildcats.  She had another star performance, striking out two batters and only letting up two earned runs after seven hits. 

The bats were really the driving force behind this win for the Wildcats, who defeated the Blue Jays, 9-3. 

Sierra McConnell stood out for Villanova, driving in the first run for the Wildcats with a double.  This would be her first RBI of the four she achieved the entire game, and the five she had in total for the day.

Ali Angelbello also hit well for the Wildcats, driving her first home run of her collegiate career over the fence.  

This sweep of Creighton pushed the Villanova Softball Team to 12-17 for the season. 

After their impressive performances against both Creighton, and previously Seton Hall, Kate Poppe and Brittany Husk both were named to the Big East Honor Roll.  Poppe has been an absolute force on the mound for the Wildcats, with 123 strikeouts over 102.1 innings.  Husk also has been an extremely important asset to the team for Villanova, batting .545. 

With this news of success, and a short Easter vacation, the Wildcats went on to face the Marist Red Foxes in a doubleheader on April 6.

In the first game of the double header, Kate Poppe pitched for the Wildcats and had yet another great game.  After giving up a single in the first inning, Poppe retired the next 12 batters.  She only allowed two runs off five hits in the 7.2 innings she pitched against the Red Foxes.  

The fourth inning saw a turn for both the Red Foxes and the Wildcats. Herschberg clinched a leadoff double and Chase Snell responded by singling to left center.  This was Snell’s ninth RBI of the season. 

However, Poppe gave up the first run of the day in the bottom of the sixth inning.  The Red Foxes had a single, then stole second, and were able to score after an RBI double to right centerfield. 

The teams would go into the seventh inning tied at one.  Subsequently, after a scoreless inning, the Wildcats and the Red Foxes went on to play an extra eighth inning.

 Villanova had a nice rally going, after Brittany Husk, Shea Palmer, and Lauren Herschberg were all able to get on base.  However, the Wildcats couldn’t capitalize on their opportunity. 

The Red Foxes went on to score in the bottom of the eighth inning after a series of singles and a walk.  

Unfortunately, the Wildcats could not top the two runs Marist was able to score, losing 2-1.  The Wildcats looked to answer with a win of their own in the next game.   

In the second game of the doubleheader, Brette Lawrence pitched a close game for the Wildcats.  She completed all seven innings, gave up no runs, and struck out four batters.  Brette earned her seventh win of the season and struck out a career high of 60 batters. 

The Wildcats took the lead in the sixth inning, after Chase Snell put the ball in play with Lauren Herschberg and Stephanie Butler on base.  After a mishandle by a Marist fielder, Herschberg was able to score and put the Wildcats up 1-0.  

Herschberg had a great day at the plate – she had three of the team’s five hits and was able to spur the run that won Villanova the game. 

This final win against the Foxes puts Villanova’s record at 13-18.  The Wildcats’ next action will be a three-game series this weekend at Butler in a critical Big East showdown.