NORFOLK, Va. – Junior Hannah Haustein hit a walk-off double in the bottom of the seventh to win game 1, and the Norfolk State softball team made it a doubleheader and series sweep of Coppin State with an 8-0 win in game 2 on Saturday, Mar 19, at the NSU Softball Field.
NSU rallied in the first game with a run in the fifth and then two in the seventh to win in walk-off fashion. Sophomore Marissa Marrero allowed just two hits in a five-inning shutout in the second contest to close out the opening weekend of conference play.
Norfolk State swept the series from Coppin State after taking the first game on Friday night. The Spartans improved to 8-10 overall and 3-0 in MEAC play, while the Eagles remained winless on the year at 0-13 and 0-3.
Coppin State gave NSU a scare in the first game thanks in part to five Spartan errors in the contest.
A double and perfectly placed bunt single to start the game gave CSU an early 1-0 lead. The Eagles added two more runs in the inning when NSU committed a pair of miscues.
Junior Kayla McNair hit an RBI double to right center in the bottom of the first to score senior Whitney Williams and get one of those runs back. But the Eagles did the same in the top of the second, scoring yet another unearned run thanks to the third Spartan error of the game.
The Spartans cut the deficit to 4-3 with two runs in their half of the second. Senior Megan Dunning doubled to left center, and Haustein moved her to third with a single to center. Freshman Kylee Lopez hit a sac fly to center and junior Devon Bitler followed with a triple to the right field corner to bring home Haustein.
Another error on NSU gave CSU a 5-3 lead in the fourth before the Spartans got the run back in the fifth. Freshman Stephanie Davenport doubled with one out, and Dunning hit a two-bagger of her own to center to again cut the deficit to one.
NSU just missed tying it up in the sixth when Williams’ shot to left center got hung up by a strong wind just enough to keep it to a double off the top of the wall. But the Spartans finally won it in the seventh.
An error to open the frame allowed for an eventual sac fly by sophomore Megan Przeslawski. Dunning followed with a double off the center fielder’s glove, and then Haustein lofted a 2-1 pitch down the left field line. The ball fell just to the right of the chalk in fair territory, and Dunning beat the throw at home for the walk-off win.
Dunning batted 3-for-3 in the contest with two runs and one RBI. Haustein added two hits and Davenport scored a pair of runs.
Freshman Hunter Halford (1-1) allowed four hits and five runs, only one of which was earned. NSU left 10 runners on base.
Marrero (4-5) did even better in game 2, giving up just two hits and striking out four in five innings of work. Przeslawski, meanwhile, drove in four runs with a bases loaded double and then a solo home run in the fourth to give NSU an eight-run cushion.
In the first, the Spartans loaded the bases with one out and scored a run when Davenport drew a five-pitch walk. Przeslawski then cleared the bases with a double deep into right center. Another bases loaded walk issued to Davenport in the second inning scored another run, but CSU center fielder Alanna Williams made a nice catch on a hard hit by Przeslawski for the third out of the inning to keep it at 5-0.
The Spartans added two more runs in the third. The first scored when left fielder Melaine Benge dropped a fly ball on the run off the bat of Bitler with the bases juiced. McNair later drew a four-pitch walk to plate another run before the Spartans again stranded three runners on.
NSU needed one run in the fourth to go up by eight and potentially win in five innings thanks to the eight-run rule. Przeslawski gave the Spartans exactly what they needed when she sent the first pitch of the bottom of the fourth over the wall in center for the day’s only homer.
Przeslawski hit 2-for-3 in the second game with four RBI, while Davenport also drove in a pair.
NSU will host Drexel for a doubleheader on Tuesday, Mar 22, at 2 p.m.
Originally posted on NSUSpartans.com.