Donzella's Hot Bat Sparks West Liberty Softball
GLENVILLE, W.Va. – All-Region catcher Kat Donzella had a huge afternoon and the West Liberty University softball team took over sole possession of second place in the Mountain East Conference North Division with a road sweep of Glenville State on Saturday.
Coach Herb Minch's Hilltoppers (13-9, 9-5) downed the host Pioneers (5-22, 2-14) by scores of 5-3 and 7-1 behind Donzella's hot bat.
The senior backstop went 6-for-7 at the plate on the afternoon, driving in five runs with a home run, two doubles and three singles as West Liberty won its fourth straight.
In the opener, Donzella's three-run circuit blast and an overpowering pitching performance by Makenzie Amend were too much for the hosts to overcome.
The Hilltoppers grabbed an early 2-0 lead with a pair of first-inning runs and Donzella's three-run bomb in the top of the fifth pushed the margin to 5-0.
Meanwhile, Amend was almost untouchable as she hurled the first five innings to get the win. The hard-throwing righthander recorded 12 of her 15 outs by strikeout while not walking a batter and surrendering just two singles.
The Pioneers got a run back in the bottom of the sixth and picked up two more unearned tallies in the seventh but it proved too little, too late.
Donzella drove in three runs with a double and home run while Connor Assif added a double, single and RBI. Allie Cook led off the game with a triple and scored the first run.
The WLU catcher was 4-for-4 in the second game with three singles, a double and a pair of RBIs but she had plenty of company in the box score. Katelynn Blair was 3-for-3 with a double and two singles while Kieran Johnson doubled home two runs. Makayla Blair added an RBI double and Sidney Little checked in with a two-run single.
Riley Bennington and Taylor Bonnett teamed up in the circle to hold the Pioneers at bay. Bennington worked the first five innings for the win, striking out six and walking one. Glenville's only run of the game came on a Jessica Williams solo home run in the bottom of the fifth.
The Hilltoppers head south on Sunday for a 2 p.m. doubleheader at Concord.
West Liberty 5, Glenville State 3
West Liberty 200 030 0 – 5 5 3
Glenville State 000 001 2 – 3 7 1
WLU: Amend wp (12SO, 0W), Paterson (6) and Donzella. Donzella HR, D, 3rbi; Assif D, S, rbi; Cook T
GSC: Werntz lp (4SO, 2W) and Richardson. Palmer 2S, Martinelli 2S
West Liberty 7, Glenville State 1
West Liberty 010 132 0 – 7 13 0
Glenville State 000 010 0 – 1 7 1
WLU: Bennington wp (6SO, 1W), Bonnett (6) (1SO, 0W) and Donzella. Donzella D, 3S, 2rbi; K.Blair D, 2S; Johnson D, 2rbi; M.Blair D, rbi; Little S, 2rbi
GSC: Maberto lp (0SO, 0W), Drake (6) (2SO, 0W) and Richardson, Smith (6). Fridley 3S; Williams HR, rbi; Richardson D