INDIANOLA, Iowa – The Simpson softball team picked up a pair of much-needed wins on Saturday, sweeping Loras 4-3 and 2-1.
The Storm (23-7, 2-4 Iowa Conference) snapped a four-game losing streak while the Duhawks (9-12, 2-6) came up short in a pair of comeback attempts.
Simpson was scheduled to face 15th-ranked Coe in a doubleheader on Sunday, but the game has been postponed to Monday, April 15 at 3 p.m. in Indianola due to the high probability of rain on Sunday.
Game 1: Simpson 4, Loras 3
Hailey Jensen hit a two-run homer and Simpson held off a last-inning rally by Loras to win game one, 4-3.
Jensen – who finished 2-for-3 – sent a Hollie Klein delivery over the left field fence to give Simpson a commanding 4-0 lead after five.
With the four-run lead, Simpson went to reliever Kinsey Van Houten to close the game out in the seventh. But after Van Houten surrendered back-to-back singles to the first two batters she faced, starter Kacee Arey re-entered.
The first batter Arey faced – Alaina Rigdon – swatted a three-run homer to center, brining Loras within a run.
Arey (17-6) settled down, though, and retired the next three batters to give Simpson its first conference win of the season.
Game 2: Simpson 2, Loras 1
Kylie Van Houten drove in the winning run in the sixth, Katlyn Ernst threw two innings of shutout ball and Simpson earned the sweep with a 2-1 win over Loras in the nightcap.
Pitching in relief of Arey, Ernst (6-1) retired the side in the sixth and got Katie Serpico swinging to end it in the seventh.
Ashley Prettyman scored the first run of the game on a double by Steele in the first. Loras tied it when Makaila Haase hit a solo shot to lead off the fourth.
With the game one win, Arey improved her career total to 56, tying her with Laurie (Dowd) Gowdy for second in Simpson history … Kelly Schade holds the record with 113.