Softball regains their groove against Brandeis

Third-year pitcher Lexi Miskey leads the Spartans in a clean-sweep victory against the Brandeis Judges, earning a record-breaking 54th career win in the process.
Third-year pitcher Lexi Miskey leads the Spartans in a clean-sweep victory against the Brandeis Judges, earning a record-breaking 54th career win in the process.
Courtesy of Tim Phillis/CWRU Athletics

The Case Western Reserve University softball team regained their stride this past weekend. After losing to Washington University in St. Louis 1-3, the Spartans swept Brandeis University from April 19-21 in dominant fashion, igniting a four-game win streak as they head into the final stretch of the regular season. The Spartans stand at 28-5 overall and 13-3 in the UAA.

The Spartans owned Game 1 on April 19 from the start, winning 6-2 after holding Brandeis scoreless for six innings. The real hero of the game was third-year pitcher Lexi Miskey. She earned her 54th career win and became the second player in program history to strike out 500 batters in the fourth inning. She is 31 strikeouts behind former Spartan Ruth Sagartz for the record. For the season, Miskey stands at 15-3 with 134 strikeouts and an ERA of 1.90.

First-year Karen Potts, fourth-year KaiLi Gross, second-year Elizabeth Berry and third-year Isabella Russo each recorded 2 hits for the game. Potts and Russo both drove in 2 runs each, and Gross added 2 walks.

Riding the momentum, the Spartans came out swinging for the history books in the second game. In the absolutely crushing 14-3 win in six innings, CWRU set the single-game program record in hits with 20, surpassing the previous record of 19 set in March of 2021 against Kenyon College. 7 of the 20 hits were doubles, which is the second most in a single game in history. The 14 runs tied the season high with Berry, Potts, fourth-year Stevie Rieger and third-year Katelyn Lamm each recording multiple hits.

Berry matched the program record with 5 hits in five attempts, equaling the record set by Lindsey Robinson in 2016. Potts recorded a solo home run in the final inning, her second of the opening day of the series. Third-year pitcher Kylie Hosey earned the win to improve to 11-2 on the season, allowing 2 earned runs with 3 strikeouts in five innings. Fourth-year Jenna Jaklich finished the contest after pitching almost two scoreless, hitless innings.

Fourth-year Jordon Manworren reaches a career high, making 3 runs batted in on 2 hits during the Spartans’ recent game against Brandeis University. (Courtesy of Tim Phillis/CWRU Athletics)

The scoring rampage continued in Game 3 as the Spartans scored in all five innings for the 14-1 victory. Back-to-back doubles in the first inning from Potts and Gross earned the first run. Russo then drove in Gross with a single for the 2-0 lead. With bases loaded in the second, Gross’s sacrifice fly drove in her second run of the game followed by a double from Rieger to push the lead to 5-0. Russo then scored on a one-out single from fourth-year Jordon Manworren before Gross’ first triple of the season plated three runners for the 9-0 advantage.

After the Judges scored their only run of the game off a solo home run, the Spartans kicked off the fourth inning with a run-scoring single from second-year Tara Fritscher, her first hit and RBI of the season. Manworren’s double drove in two more runners while first-year Nylah Durham’s run-scoring single pushed the lead to 13-1. Berry’s sacrifice fly in the fifth drove in the 14th and final run of the game.

The Judges put up more of a fight in the final game of the series, but CWRU still took the game 8-4. In the first inning, Gross scored on a single by Rieger. Rieger then stole second and scored following a double from Berry. Brandeis tied the game in the bottom of the first. Then in the fourth, the Spartans broke the tie with a run from Durham, who scored on a first-and-third stolen base by fourth-year Kela Jagoda.

Following a couple more runs, the score stood at 6-3 heading into the last inning. Lamm hit a two-out single to plate Russo and Berry. The Judges got one final run in before the game ended 8-4. Miskey earned the win after giving up 1 run and 3 hits while recording 7 strikeouts.

The Spartans will host seven more games to finish the season, all at home in Mather Park. They will play Carnegie Mellon University from April 26-28 in a four-game series. The University of Mount Union will visit on May 5. The University of Chicago will play two games against CWRU on May 11.

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