Kayleigh Pate’s first shutout led Urbana University softball past Ohio Christian in the first game of Wednesday’s doubleheader split. UU claimed a 5-0 triumph in Game 1 before falling 7-5 in the nightcap.
Mykee Holtz homered in the second inning, her fifth long ball of the year, and that was all the offense needed in the shutout win. Holtz is now tied for eighth in school history with 10 career home runs. The junior was one of three players with a pair of hits including Kylah Swanson (2-3, RBI) and Kayleigh Pate (2-4, 2B).
Pate was untouchable in the circle, tossing a four-hit shutout with a career-high eight strikeouts. The sophomore right-hander did not walk a batter.
In the third inning, UU strung together four consecutive hits with two outs to push across four more runs. Freshman Mia Smallwood began the rally and was followed by freshman Mackenzie Frantz, Holtz and Swanson.
Ohio Christian (18-30) responded each time UU tried to pull ahead in the second game. After seeing two leads disappear, the Blue Knights scored twice in the fifth inning as Swanson’s two-out single evened the score at 5-5.
However, the Trailblazers also scored a pair to reclaim the lead for good.
Smallwood led the way at the plate, going 3 for 4 with an RBI double in the first. Pate and Swanson each posted an RBI.
OCU’s Whitney Fiedler picked up the win in the circle. Both teams had nine hits in the second game.
UU (6-42) is slated to host Wheeling Jesuit (today) and West Liberty (Saturday) in the home finale this weekend.
The Blue Knights will close out the regular season at West Virginia Wesleyan on Sunday.