IWU softball sweeps doubleheader

By adviser Feb 26, 2021
Colleen Palczynski throwing the ball around the horn after completing the out at first Photo: Illinois Wesleyan University
Colleen Palczynski throwing the ball around the horn after completing the out at first
Photo: Illinois Wesleyan University

After a canceled spring 2020 season and a 2nd place finish nationally in 2019, Illinois Wesleyan University softball took the field once again this past Thursday, Feb 18 against the Illinois College Lady Blues in Peoria, IL.

“The ultimate goal is to get on the field as much as possible and that is what we plan to do. Our team has been awesome through this whole process. No matter if we have to reschedule practices, games, or the protocols change, they just roll with it. They have been so flexible and have kept a positive attitude through this whole year,” assistant coach Nikki Miller said.

IWU came away from the doubleheader 2-0. The first of the doubleheader was won by IWU 10-0 after a shortened five-inning game due to the slaughter rule, which comes into effect when one team is winning by 10 runs or more by the end of the fourth inning.

Junior starting pitcher Madie Monk earned the win after pitching five scoreless innings allowing only four hits, zero walks and striking out two.

Monk had a flurry of offensive support led by first-year Bailey Turner with a team-high three hits, 2 runs batted in and 2 runs scored, first-year Kristina Sherwin led the team in RBI’s with three. 

“Each individual on our team works so hard and is extremely passionate about the game of softball. We have a collective mindset of just showing up every single day to get the best work done that we can,” Monk said.

During the team’s last season (2019) they finished second in the NCAA Division III championship.
Photo: Illinois Wesleyan University

The second game of the doubleheader was closer but IWU still won the game 6-4 after they held off the Lady Blues seventh-inning failed comeback to only two runs.

The offense of this game was led by Turner, junior Hayley Earl and senior Lexy Trammel who each had 2 hits while Earl and senior Toni Tortorella also led the team with 2 RBI’s a piece.

“Playing through a pandemic has been very interesting. To me, having the ability to play again has been the one piece of normalcy I’ve found in all of this. I definitely appreciate the ability to play softball so much more now after losing our last season. I cherish every game and practice because I never really know when it could be my last,” Tortorella said.

The team lost nine seniors last year. This group of seniors were a significant part of the team since they made it to the national tournament all three years it was offered. 

“This season is really about making a new identity for ourselves and continuing the amazing legacy that our alumni left. Of course, winning the CCIW and making the postseason is always a huge goal, and I would love to go to my third national championship,” Tortorella said. 

The women Titans do not have another game on the schedule until March 20 where they will head to Transylvania, Kentucky to face off against Trine University and the Transylvania Pioneers.

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