Softball - Tue, Apr. 7, 2009
CHICAGO - Despite belting out a combined 23 hits over the doubleheader, the Saint Xavier University softball team split games with University of St. Francis (Ill.) falling victim to a grand slam in game one by USF junior left fielder Maggie O'Shea that led to a 4-3 loss in Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference (CCAC) action Tuesday afternoon at SXU Softball Field in Chicago. The Cougars (20-13 overall/11-3 CCAC) bounced back in the day's second game posting 12 hits en route to a 9-0 shutout victory. The doubleheader was originally scheduled to be played at University of St. Francis in Joliet, Ill., but was moved due to poor field conditions.

Things looked promising in the early goings of Tuesday's first game as SXU scored a run in each of the first two innings, the first on a first-inning RBI double by sophomore second baseman Brittany Hannigan (Palos Hills, Ill./Stagg) and the second on RBI single by sophomore centerfielder Megan Paradzinski (Munster, Ind./Munster). However, with two outs in the third inning, O'Shea hit her eventual game-winning grand slam to give her team a 4-2 lead. A bases-loaded walk by senior third baseman Megen Friscia (Homer Glen, Ill./Lockport) in the fifth inning cut the deficit to a run, but the Cougars would manage just two hits and no runs the rest of the way. Freshman Amie Brown (Joliet, Ill./Joliet Catholic) took the loss (7-6 overall) allowing five hits, four runs (all earned) and five walks in seven innings of work.

Junior Jalyn Shearer (Beecher, Ill./Beecher) stifled the USF bats in game two allowing just three hits and five walks to go along with two strikeouts to capture the 9-0 victory, her 11th of the season (11-4 overall). There was plenty of offense as well with sophomore first baseman Courtney Murphy (Oak Forest, Ill./Oak Forest) leading the way going 3-for-4 with a double, three runs scored and two RBI. Friscia also had some big at-bats in game two going 2-for-4 with a pair of doubles and four RBI. The Cougars scored five runs over the first three innings and then capped the game with four more runs in the seventh.

Saint Xavier (20-13 overall/11-3 CCAC) continues conference play on Thursday, April 9, with a home doubleheader against Robert Morris College (Ill.). The twinbill is scheduled for a 3 p.m. start at SXU Softball Field in Chicago.