HUNTINGDON, Pa.- The Juniata softball team claimed wins in both games of their afternoon doubleheader against Penn State-Altoona on Tuesday. After a resounding 9-1 victory in five innings in game one, game two would be a much closer affair, with a final score of 4-3.
After a scoreless first inning in game one, both teams found their power strokes in inning number two. A solo home run put Penn State-Altoona up 1-0, but it would prove to be a short-lived advantage. A two-RBI single from Caleigh Love (Yardley, Pa. / Pennsbury) gave Juniata the 2-1 lead before a three-run moon shot from senior Maya McLeod (San Diego, Calif. / La Jolla Country Day) extended the Eagles' lead. The lead would grow again in the fourth inning, with McLeod scoring on an RBI double from Alison Superka (Orefield, Pa. / Parkland) before Superka came around to score later in the inning. The Eagles would tack on two more runs in the bottom of the fifth thanks to RBI singles from Cate Baran (Tyrone, Pa. / Tyrone) and Catherine Miller (Huntingdon, Pa. / Huntingdon). Meanwhile, Baran's pitching stymied the Penn State-Altoona offense, giving up only one run on four hits while striking out two to earn her third win of the season.
Game two began with McLeod launching her second home run of the day, a solo shot to dead center field in the bottom of the first. She would finish the day with a combined statline of three hits in seven at-bats, four RBIs, and three runs scored between the two games. Penn State-Altoona would answer Juniata's tally in the top of the second with a run of their own, before adding two more runs in the top of the third to take a 3-1 lead. Back-to-back RBI doubles in the bottom of the fourth from Ruthie Betts (Hawk Run, Pa. / West Branch Area) and Jessie Hunt (Bath, Pa. / Northampton Area) knotted the game back up at three apiece. Betts would then continue her strong game at the plate with a second RBI double, bringing home the run in the bottom of the sixth inning that would become the game winner. Cat Miller took the win in the circle, giving up Penn State-Altoona's three runs in the second and third inning before tightening up to produce four straight shutout innings to finish the game.
The two wins doubled the Eagles' win tally for the season, moving their record to 4-10 overall. They'll now look to a Saturday trip to Susquehanna for a chance to get their first Landmark Conference win of the season, having lost their first two conference games against Moravian last week.