By Zach Payne
The KU softball team fell to West Chester in both games of a doubleheader on Saturday, April 12. The Golden Bears pitched and defended well in both games, but the bats were quiet. WCU needed just two pitchers to complete the mini sweep of the Maroon and Gold as both Kim Murl and Micaela McSpadden hurled complete games to beat KU 2-0 in game one and 3-1 in the nightcap.
Dominique Ficara (9-8) got the loss in game one, conceding two runs in in the first inning and then giving way to Savannah Nierintz (2-6) after recording just two outs. Nierintz finished the game, pitching the remaining 5.1 innings without allowing another run, but the offense couldn’t muster any run support.
West Chester’s Kim Murl (8-3) delivered a shutout to earn the victory and she drove in a run in the first inning to open up the scoring for her side.
Game two yielded a similar result. Once again it was a combination of Nierintz and Ficara keeping the game close, but the Golden Bear offense was stymied by WCU pitcher Micaela McSpadden (9-0), who allowed just one run in her seven innings of work to remain unbeaten on the season. Nierintz suffered the loss for KU, working 2.1 innings of two-run ball.
Colleen Smith knocked in the lone run of the day for the Golden Bears on an RBI single through the right side of the infield scoring Morgan Booth from third.
Saturday’s sweep in West Chester drops the Maroon and Gold to 14-19 overall with a 6-8 mark in the PSAC East. WCU (26-12, 13-4 PSAC East) outhit KU 10-3 in game one and 9-4 in game two on their home turf. Teams traveling to West Chester have struggled to find success. The PSAC East leading Golden Rams are now 12-2 this year at home.
The final third of the Golden Bears’ season will consist of 14 PSAC East matchups, giving them the opportunity to make up some ground in the conference. However, eight of those 14 games will be against opponents with better records than KU, so it will be a tough road for the defending PSAC champs as they try to put it all together and repeat this season.