CHARLESTON, W.Va. – The West Liberty University softball team split a Mountain East Conference doubleheader with the University of Charleston here Monday at a sunny but frigid UC Softball Field.
Coach Herb Minch's Hilltoppers (16-10, 6-2) shut out the host Golden Eagles (14-10, 6-2) by a 6-0 count in the opener but the hosts bounced back with a 5-3 win in the nightcap.
Makenzie Amend and Taylor Bonnett teamed up on a two-hit shutout for the Black and Gold in Game One. Amend blanked Charleston through the first five innings and Bonnett came on to slam the door with two innings of no-hit, no-run relief as the WLU duo combined for a dozen strikeouts against three walks.
Annie Paterson led the winners at the plate, launching her fourth and fifth home runs of the season to chase home half of West Liberty's six runs. The southpaw slugger also singled and scored a pair of runs. Kieran Johnson added a double and single while Amend, Sidney Little and Jairika Baylor all chipped in with a hit and an RBI.
In the second game, Charleston jumped out to a 4-0 lead with one run in the first inning and three more in the third. The Hilltoppers answered with a three-spot of their own in the top of the fourth but UC added an insurance tally in the sixth and West Liberty couldn't battle back.
Johnson doubled, singled and drove in a run for WLU while Paterson added a double and single. Kayla Mancuso highlighted the Hilltoppers' three-run fourth inning with a two-run triple.
West Liberty steps out of MEC play on Wednesday to host Slippery Rock (Pa.) in an afternoon doubleheader. First pitch is set for 3 p.m. at the WLU Softball Complex.
West Liberty 6, Charleston 0
West Liberty 000 005 1 - 6 11 0
Charleston 000 000 0 - 0 2 4
WLU: Amend wp (9SO, 2W), Bonnett (6) (3SO, 1W) and Blair, Holbrook (6). Paterson 2HR, S, 3rbi; Johnson D, S; Little S, rbi; Amend S, rbi; Baylor S, rbi
UC: Bauer lp (5SO, 1W) and Lake.
Charleston 5, West Liberty 3
West Liberty 000 300 0 - 3 7 1
Charleston 103 001 x - 5 8 0
WLU: Paterson lp (6SO, 1W) and Holbrook. Johnson D, S, rbi; Paterson D, S; Mancuso T, 2rbi
UC: Hoppe wp (2SO, 1W), Haegele (5) (1SO, 0W) and Pelfrey. Marshall 2S, rbi; Rose 2S,; Donato S, 2rbi; Bowman S, rbi; Pelfrey D