April 9, 2014
Box Score (Game 1)
Box Score (Game 2)
HIGHLAND HEIGHTS, Ky. - Marshall softball (17-23) had an offensive day to remember against Northern Kentucky (3-32), winning the program's 600th and 601st games with a combined 33 hits and six home runs. The Thundering Herd has hit 12 home runs in its last seven games, which have been played in the last seven days.
With 19 hits in the first game of the day and 14 in Game 2, Marshall had its fifth and sixth consecutive double-digit hit games. The team set a new record in the first game with the team's previous best being 18 hits against UCF (3/19/06).
In the same game, the Herd had five home runs to set a new team-best. Marshall had hit four long balls in a single game six times prior with the most recent coming against George Mason (2/10/12). The 17 runs that Marshall put up tied the record, accomplishing the mark twice before against Ohio (4/11/12) and Kent State (3/6/11).
Sophomore Shaelynn Braxton (Woodbridge, Va.) showcased her power, blasting three consecutive home runs in Game 1 and one in Game 2. The last Marshall student-athlete to connect for three long balls in a game was Rachel Folden against Austin Peay (3/4/06). The underclassman was 4-for-7 on the day with five runs and 11 RBI.
Senior Savanah Webster (Las Vegas, Nev.) and sophomore Raquel Escareno (Wellington, Colo.) both contributed long balls in the first game, as well. Webster's first-pitch homer was her fifth of the season, the highlight of her 5-for-8 performance with two runs and four RBI on the day. Escareno hit her fourth homer of the season and was 5-for-8 with three runs and two RBI between both games.
Sophomore Kaelynn Greene (Eastvale, Calif.) was 5-for-8 with five runs on the day and reached base in almost every at-bat to stretch her on-base streak to 16 games.
Freshman Jordan Dixon (Edmond, Okla.) earned the program's 600th victory in a one-hit shutout fashion for her second shutout win of the season.
Marshall will travel back to Huntington to prepare for conference action against new C-USA foe North Texas in a three-game series. The first game of the doubleheader between the Herd and the Mean Green will be televised on Fox Sports Network.
Marshall 17, Northern Kentucky 0 (5)
The Herd had an aggressive start in the first game of the day, taking advantage of early Norse errors to grab a 4-0 lead in the first inning, utilizing the entire lineup.
Greene led things off for the Herd with a bunt single, and freshman Morgan Zerkle (Milton, W.Va.) moved her to second by drawing a walk. A double steal by the speedy duo caused an error and allowed Greene to score for the 1-0 lead.
Zerkle tagged up and advanced to third on a flyout from S. Braxton and was brought around with a home run from Webster to make it 3-0.
Sophomore Katalin Lucas (Agua Dulce, Calif.) and senior Taylor Winton (Federal Way, Wash.) drew back-to-back walks, and freshman Rebecca Myslenski (Seabrook, Texas) loaded the bases with an infield single.
The final run of the inning scored on a wild pitch from the Norse hurler for the 4-0 lead.
Marshall ended the Norse's half inning, quickly and attacked again in the top of the second.
After back-to-back singles put Greene and Zerkle on base to lead off the inning, S. Braxton connected for a three-run long ball to push the Herd ahead 7-0.
Webster doubled to keep things alive and reached third on a one-out error that allowed Escareno to reach base safely. Freshmen pinch runners Jessica Watts (Wayne, W.Va.) and Jennifer Brumfield (Ona, W.Va) swapped places with their teammates on base. Winton connected for an RBI-single to stretch the Marshall lead to 8-0.
After retiring Northern Kentucky in order, Marshall continued with its offensive dominance and took a 15-0 lead in the third off of eight hits - one of which was an S. Braxton grand slam.
Dixon surrendered her one and only hit in the top of the third inning to a single up the middle.
Marshall did not let up, and with another S. Braxton long ball in the fourth and an Escareno homer in the fifth, the Herd took a 17-0 lead.
The game ended after five innings via run rule, in which the Herd scored in every inning and every starter contributed a least one hit. Dixon (13-15) was credited with the shutout victory, behind 19 hits and one error. The Norse had one hit in the ball game, while committing three miscues.
Marshall 8, Northern Kentucky 2
The Herd carried its momentum into the second game of the day against the Norse, taking the first lead of the game in the first inning.
Greene and Zerkle both singled and stole bases to put Marshall on second and third with no outs in the first. With one out on the board, Greene crossed the dish on a grounder for the Herd's sole run of the inning.
After retiring NKU in the bottom half of the inning, the Herd racked up five runs in top of the second.
Escareno led things off with a first-pitch single and swapped places on base with Watts, who stole second and advanced to third on an error. Winton connected for a stand-up triple to give the Herd an insurance run to make the lead 2-0. The veteran was brought across the dish to score on junior Emileigh Cooper's (Jackson, Ohio) RBI single to go up 3-0.
Cooper was tagged out in an attempted steal, but Marshall's Greene and Zerkle reached base to put two on for power-hitter S. Braxton.
The sophomore found the connection for her fourth homer of the day to push the Herd ahead 6-0.
Marshall's first scoreless inning of the day and Northern Kentucky's first run of the day occurred in the third inning when the Norse scored off of one hit and one error to shrink the Marshall lead to 6-1.
The Herd's bats didn't stop swinging, but Marshall couldn't find a way to bring runners across the plate until the top of the fifth.
Escareno led off the inning with a single and later scored off of junior Kristina Braxton's (Woodbridge, Va.) double into left center.
Marshall attacked again in the top of the sixth off of one hit and one error to go up 8-1.
The Norse fought back and shrunk the lead with a single run in the bottom of the sixth for the game's final margin.
Neither team scored in the seventh, giving the six-run victory to freshman Lindsey Fadnek (Coalfield, Tenn.) for her fourth win of the season. Marshall posted 14 hits and committed three errors, while Northern Kentucky connected for eight hits and had five errors.