CHICAGO – Limiting University of St. Francis (Ill.) to just six total hits and no runs, the No. 11 ranked Saint Xavier University softball team extended its current win streak to 13 games Sunday afternoon with a doubleheader sweep in Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference (CCAC) action at SXU Softball Field in Chicago. The Cougars (29-3 overall/13-1 CCAC) needed an extra inning to capture a 1-0 victory in the opener, but exploded for 14 hits in the second game to earn a 10-0 win in just five innings. With the two games Sunday, the impressive SXU pitching staff has now thrown 20 shutouts over the 32 games the team has played this season.
Sophomore Nicole Nonnemacher
(Bloomington, Ill./Normal Community) threw another gem for the Cougars in game one going all eight frames and allowing just four hits and a walk, while striking out 11 Fighting Saints. She improves her record to 12-2 on the year with Sunday's victory. Both teams struggled to get anything going offensively with each squad posting four hits in the game. In the bottom of the eighth inning, junior catcher Megan James
(Oak Forest, Ill./Marist) opened the frame with a walk and a single by senior right fielder Katie Houlihan
(Tinley Park, Ill./Lincoln-Way North) down the left field line moved the new base runner, sophomore Denise Anderson
(Arvada, Colorado/Ralston Valley), over to second base. After an out, sophomore second baseman Kasey Kanaga
(Metamora, Ill./Metamora) reached on a USF throwing error and the error brought home Anderson from second base for the game-winning run.
The second game was a completely different tale as Saint Xavier scored early with two runs in the bottom of the second inning off a RBI single by James and junior left fielder Katie Sears
(Chicago, Ill./Evansville/Mother McAuley). The Cougars put the game away in the next inning opening the frame with six straight singles en route to nine hits for eight more runs. James, Kanaga and freshman third baseman Franchesca Graffeo
(Crestwood, Ill./Shepard) each drove home a pair of runs with their singles in the third inning. Senior Megan Nonnemacher
(Bloomington, Ill./Normal Community) earned the win on the mound for SXU, her team-leading 14th (14-1) of the season. She went all five frames and gave up just two hits and two walks with a strikeout.
Saint Xavier (29-3 overall/13-1 CCAC) takes a break from conference play and heads up north on Tuesday, April 15, to take on NCAA Division II University of Wisconsin-Parkside (Wis.). The doubleheader is scheduled for a 3 p.m. start in Kenosha, Wis.