By ASHLEY OWENS
Eastern’s softball team opened its OVC with back-to-back wins against the Belmont University Bruins on March 15. The doubleheader victories came after a combo of big tough early offense and strong pitching from seniors Leanna Pittsenbarger, Shaylon Robb and junior Hayley Flynn.
The first game against the Bruins (5-14, 0-2 OVC) saw a big first inning, where the Colonels scored four points straight out of the gates for a 10-0 win.
Sophomore Krislyn Campos had the ball rolling for Eastern after she connected for a triple down the center field line. After freshman Paige Murphy walked then stole second base, junior Sarah Fobbs stepped up with an RBI single to give Eastern its first run. A few batters later, freshman Johnkyria Alston hit a three-run RBI to move Murphy, Fobbs and senior Shannon McQueen home.
The Colonels tallied another run in the second inning with a solo home run from Sophomore Amber Murray. Senior Katie Tackett’s two-run homer aided another four-run inning for the Colonels. One last run in the fifth and final inning put the game out of the Bruins reach as the Eastern earned its first OVC win of the season.
PIttsenbarger held up the defensive front where she kept the Bruins at one hit, struck out seven and walked one in her five innings of pitching.
The Colonels gained another early lead in the second game of Sunday’s doubleheader and led Belmont by two heading into the fourth inning.
Murphy stepped up then and knocked a two-run home run over left-center to lead by four in the fourth inning. The Bruins tried for a comeback in the bottom half of the inning, but only managed one run.
Murray had a highlighted day as she was a perfect 6-for-6 from the plate in game two.
Robb allowed just five hits and one run in five innings while Flynn pitched the final six outs and kept the Bruins at no runs.
The Colonels (11-12, 2-0 OVC) open home play March 21 against Southern Illinois University Edwardsville and March 22 against Eastern Illinois University. Both days are scheduled as double headers and begin at 1 p.m.