COOKEVILLE, Tenn. --The Tennessee Tech softball team suffered
its first shutout in two weeks and its second straight loss on
Wednesday, falling to the Lady Toppers of Western Kentucky,
Sophomore Maddie Schmissrauter got the starting nod for the Golden Eagles (19-18, 7-1 OVC), not allowing a hit through the first three innings. In the fourth, however, Lindsay Antone led off the frame with a double to right-center, which was followed up by a triple by Sam Cronk, putting the Lady Toppers (18-11) up 1-0.
With two outs in the fifth, Tech threatened when freshman Jordan Leff singled through the left side and stole second, just Tech's second stolen base of the year. However, strong Western Kentucky defense was able to strand Leff and keep the Golden Eagles scoreless.
Senior Kristina Hortert came in to pitch for Tech in the sixth, keeping the Lady Toppers hitless throughout the final two innings. Brooke Reed led off the sixth, reaching on an error by sophomore Lacie Coquerille. After a hit batter and a walk, another error by Coquerille allowed two unearned runs to score, putting WKU up 3-0.
Tech's final opportunity came in the bottom of the seventh. After sophomore Callie Schmidt singled down the left field line. Sophomore Kaleigh Gates ripped the first pitch she saw to the deepest part of the park, but it ended up as an out in the glove of Jamie Hennis, standing an arm's length from the fence.
Schmissrauter (10-9) got the loss, allowing just two hits and striking out four in her five innings on the hill.
Sophomore Katie Betry went 1-3 and reached on an error as Tech stranded all six base runners. Schmidt, Coquerille, and Leff each went 1-3 also.
Ryan Rogge (14-5) took the win for Western Kentucky, striking out seven batters and walking just one in her complete-game outing.
The Golden Eagles get a day of rest before hosting Morehead State in a three-game series beginning with a doubleheader Saturday at 1 p.m.