CHICAGO – Senior shortstop Ashley Sullivan (Lemont, Ill./UW-Parkside/Lemont) picked the right day to have a nice outing as the No. 13 ranked Saint Xavier University softball team celebrated "Senior Day" with a doubleheader sweep of Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference (CCAC) foe Cardinal Stritch University (Wis.) Saturday afternoon at the SXU Softball Field in Chicago. Sullivan finished the day a combined 3-for-7 at the plate with a triple, two runs scored and three RBI. The Cougars (29-3 overall/10-0 CCAC) extended their current win streak to 10 games and have only lost one game since March 10, a span of 28 games. SXU won the first game, 7-0, and then pulled away late for a 9-1 victory in game two over six innings.
Junior right-hander Megan Nonnemacher (Bloomington, Ill./Normal Community) had another stellar outing on the mound for Saint Xavier in game one Saturday. She allowed seven hits in the shutout, her eighth of the season, and improved her record this season to 15-1. Nonnemacher also allowed a walk and posted six strikeouts over her seven innings of work. An infield error by Stritch gave SXU its first run of the game in the bottom of the second inning. Freshman right fielder Nicole Nonnemacher (Bloomington, Ill./Normal Community) drove in the Cougars' next run recording the RBI on a fielder's choice in the bottom of the fourth to make the score, 2-0. A RBI triple to centerfield by Sullivan extended the Saint Xavier to 3-0 in the fifth. A two-run double by junior designated hitter Ariel Hinton (Crawfordsville, Ind./Crawfordsville), plus a RBI triple by junior catcher Megan James (Oak Forest, Ill./Marist) and a RBI single by senior third baseman Kate Mollohan (Tinley Park, Ill./Andrew), plated four runs in the sixth and completed the game's scoring.
In the second game, Cardinal Stritch took a 1-0 lead in the top of the third off a RBI double to right field. However, sophomore first baseman Amanda Hainlen (Bloomington, Ill./Heartland CC/Bloomington) answered with a RBI double of her own in the bottom of the frame to tie the game, 1-1. James notched a RBI in the fourth off a fielder's choice to put the Cougars up, 2-0. SXU finished the game strong scoring seven runs in the bottom of the sixth to end things early. The highlights from the big inning included a two-run single by Sullivan and a two-run homer by sophomore centerfielder Shannon Lauret (Beach Park, Ill./Zion-Benton). Nicole Nonnemacher pitched the late game and had another impressive showing going all seven innings allowing just two hits, one run (earned) and two walks with eight strikeouts. She improved her record to 14-2 this season. Hainlen had the hot bat in game two going a perfect 3-for-3 with two doubles, a run scored and two RBI.
Saint Xavier (29-3 overall/10-0 CCAC) heads to Joliet, Ill., on Sunday, April 14, to play a conference doubleheader against rival University of St. Francis (Ill.). The first game is scheduled for a 5 p.m. start.