Orlando, Fla. - Behind the solid play of junior shortstop Ashley Hunter (Metamora, Ill./Metamora), the Saint Xavier University softball team has
jumped out to a 4-2 record through the first six games of its 2011 season as
part of its annual Florida trip, which started on Sunday, February 27. The Cougars opened the trip with three
straight wins over University of Michigan-Dearborn, Goshen College (Ind.) and
Warner Southern University (Fla.), respectively, before dropping its second
game with Warner Southern and then splitting a tough doubleheader with Florida
Southern College (Fla.) Tuesday evening.
Hunter is off to a hot start over the six-game stretch racking up nine
hits (two doubles), six runs scored and three RBI.
In a 5-2 victory over
Michigan-Dearborn Saturday, senior catcher Amy Kennedy (Pontiac, Ill./Pontiac)
had the hot bat for SXU going 2-for-3 with a double and two RBI. Hunter also finished the game 2-for-3 with
two runs scored. Freshman pitcher Megan
Nonnemacher (Bloomington, Ill./Normal Community) notched the first win of her
collegiate career (1-0) for the Cougars throwing all seven innings and allowing
just four hits, two runs (both earned) and a walk with seven strikeouts. SXU carried the momentum into Saturday's
second game against Goshen College as Hunter exploded for three hits with two
runs scored and a RBI to lead the team to an 8-0 win in six innings. Senior second baseman Brittany Hannigan
(Palos Hills, Ill./Stagg) went 1-for-3 with two RBI and a run scored. Junior pitcher Amie Brown (Joliet,
Ill./Joliet Catholic) logged the shutout victory for Saint Xavier hurling all
six innings and giving up nine hits and two walks with three strikeouts.
Nonnemacher had a huge outing
on the mound in SXU's first game Monday against Warner Southern, a 3-0 victory
for the Cougars. She shut down their
offensive production limiting the opposition to just three hits and four walks
over seven innings, while striking out five batters. Kennedy finished 2-for-3 at the plate for SXU
with a RBI as all three runs of the game were scored in the top of the first
inning. Unfortunately for Saint Xavier,
Warner Southern's bats got hot in game two as the Cougars fell 8-0 in six
innings. Brown took the loss for SXU
throwing all five innings and allowing eight hits, eight runs (four earned) and
three walks with a strikeout.
Florida Southern also proved
to be a tough foe in game one of Tuesday's meeting, which the Mocs dominated by
a score of 9-1 behind 16 hits. Senior
first baseman Courtney Murphy (Oak Forest, Ill./Oak Forest) went 2-for-3 at the
plate, while senior centerfielder Megan Paradzinski (Munster, Ind./Munster)
posted SXU's only RBI. Junior Nicole
Derezinski (St. John, Ind./Andrean) took the loss (0-1) for the Cougars on the
mound. After falling behind 4-0 after
three innings of play in game two, SXU scored seven runs over the next three
innings to claim a 7-5 win. Freshman
left fielder Katie Houlihan (Tinley Park, Ill./Lincoln-Way North) went 2-for-4
with a triple, two runs scored and two RBI.
Freshman third baseman Ariel Hinton (Crawfordsville,
Ind./Crawfordsville) and sophomore second baseman Ashley Tenerelli (Oak Lawn,
Ill./Richards) each logged two hits and a RBI as well. Nonnemacher stayed perfect on the season
(3-0) pitching all seven innings and giving up nine hits, five runs (all
earned) and five walks with five strikeouts.
Saint Xavier (4-2 overall)
takes Wednesday off before returning to action on Thursday, March 3, with a
pair of games. The first game pits the
Cougars against Ferrum College (Va.) at 12:30 p.m. (central) followed by a 2:30
p.m. match-up against Alma College (Mich.).