CHICAGO - Senior center fielder Megan Paradzinski (Munster,
Ind./Munster) hit a RBI single to centerfield with one out in the bottom of the
seventh to give Saint Xavier University a thrilling 3-2 victory over No. 13
ranked and league-leading Olivet Nazarene University (Ill.) in the first game
of a Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference (CCAC) softball doubleheader
Thursday at SXU Softball Field in Chicago.
The Cougars (24-10 overall/11-3 CCAC) carried the momentum over into
game two riding an early lead to a 7-4 win.
SXU got two nice pitching performances from junior Amie Brown (Joliet,
Ill./Joliet Catholic) and freshman Megan Nonnemacher (Bloomington, Ill./Normal
Community). Brown set the tone in the
opener throwing all seven frames and allowing just two hits, two runs (one
earned) and three walks with nine strikeouts.
She is now 11-4 on the season.
The Cougars came out swinging in Thursday's
opener and went ahead, 1-0, in the bottom of the first inning on a RBI
groundout by senior catcher Amy Kennedy (Pontiac, Ill./Pontiac) that scored
senior second baseman Brittany Hannigan (Palos Hills, Ill./Stagg) from
third. In the bottom of the second,
sophomore designated hitter Jamie Reed (Lincoln, Neb./Saint Pius X) crushed a
solo shot to center field to give SXU a 2-0 advantage. A two-out, RBI single by ONU junior shortstop
Jordan Reynolds cut the lead in half, 2-1, in the top of the third. A passed ball with the bases loaded in the
top of the fifth tied the game, 2-2, before Brown got the final out of the
frame on a fly-out to left field. Brown gave
the Tigers no further chances putting them down in order, including three
strikeouts, in the sixth and seventh innings.
That set the stage for Paradzinski's late-game heroics created by a one-out
single by freshman right fielder Katie Houlihan (Tinley Park, Ill./Lincoln-Way
North) and a key walk by freshman pinch-hitter Ariel Hinton (Crawfordsville,
In the bottom of the second inning of the
nightcap, Reed blasted a three-run homer over the wall in left-center field to
give SXU an early 3-0 advantage. A
bases-loaded double by ONU junior third baseman Molly Anderson tied the game,
3-3, in the top of the fourth before Saint Xavier took back the lead, 4-3, in
the bottom of the inning on a sacrifice fly by Hinton. Back-to-back RBI doubles by senior first
baseman Courtney Murphy (Oak Forest, Ill./Oak Forest) and sophomore third
baseman Kate Mollohan (Tinley Park, Ill./Andrew) followed by a RBI single by
Reed extended the lead to 7-3 in the bottom of the fifth. The Tigers got a run back and loaded the bases
in the seventh before Brown came in to strike out the final batter and earn her
first save of the year. Nonnemacher
pitched 6.2 innings for the Cougars and gave up six hits, four runs (all
earned) and four walks with eight strikeouts.
Saint Xavier (24-10 overall/11-3 CCAC) takes part in the two-day Bethel
College Invitational this weekend in Mishawaka, Ind. The Cougars open their first of four games in
the tournament with a 10 a.m. (central) game against the host Pilots on Friday,