Tiger bats explode in sweep of Spartans

CRESTON – The Marshalltown softball team scord 20 runs on 31 hits in sweeping Southwestern in an Iowa Community College Athletic Conference Division II doubleheader on Wednesday.

The Tigers cranked out 14 hits in a 9-3 win in the opener and then collected 17 more in an 11-6 victory in the nightcap.

Lexie Biehl had four hits and drove in six runs on the day. The reigning ICCAC offensive player of the week was 3-for-4 with five RBIs in the opener. She doubled three times.

West Marshall graduate McKenna Hotopp also had a big game in the opener, finishing 3-for-4 with a home run, a double, two runs and three RBIs. Whitney Baker was 2-for-4 with two runs scored, while Emmeline Huffaker contributed two hits and a walk.

In the circle, Sarah Wilson delivered another stellar performance. She improved to 6-3 on the season after striking out 13 Spartans in six innings. She allowed three hits and no earned runs.

The Tigers led 4-0 after two innings thanks to a three-run second frame and then blew the game open with two more runs in the fourth and three in the seventh.

MCC (11-6) got 11 of its 17 hits from four Tiger hitters in game two.

Leading the way was Holli Baker, who finished 4-of-5 with a double and a home run. She also had five RBIs.

Shaiann Treu had three hits and scored twice, while Hotopp and Brooke Dunkin each had two hits, one run and one RBI. Dunkin also tripled, while Hotopp and Treu each had a double.

Baker improved to 2-2 in the circle after allowing five earned runs on eight hits in seven innings. She fanned nine and walked three.

MCC led 1-0 after one inning but turned that deficit into 10-0 after three runs crossed in the second and six more came home in the third.

Southwestern (7-4), which received votes in the latest NJCAA Division II poll, scored three runs in the fourth and two more in the sixth but the early deficit was too much too overcome.

The Tigers have now scored at least 10 runs in seven games this season and boasts six players with batting averages better than .400. MCC leads the ICCAC in team batting average (.403), on-base percentage, slugging percentage and extra base hits.

MCC will next play eight games in four days.

That stretch begins today when the Tigers travel back to Southwestern for a doubleheader against ICCAC rival North Iowa Area Community College. First pitch is scheduled for 3:30 p.m.