Strong pitching and solid hitting helped the Lindsey Wilson Softball team to a Mid-South Conference doubleheader sweep of visiting Pikeville (Ky.) on Sunday at Lindsey Wilson Park. The sixth-ranked Blue Raiders (23-6, 7-3 MSC) put early ends to both games with a five-inning, 9-1 victory in the opener and followed with an 8-0, six-inning shutout in the nightcap to complete the four-game weekend sweep of the Bears (9-11, 3-7 MSC). Lyndsey Parden and Casey Bryan were the driving force in the circle for Lindsey Wilson. Parden went the distance in the opener allowing just one earned run on three hits with five strikeouts. Bryan followed with a complete-game one hitter with eight strikeouts without issuing a walk in the series finale. She retired a string of 16 consecutive batters before finally giving up her lone hit on the day in the top of the sixth.
At the plate, Chelsea Showers and Andrea Whelan each recorded four hits on the afternoon. Showers finished with five RBIs, Whelan with three and Bailey Mize added four RBIs on the day to help the Blue Raiders outscore the Bears 35-5 during the weekend. Jenna Firestein scored four times on the day.
The Blue Raiders got out to a quick start in the opener jumping out to a 4-1 lead after two innings. Lindsey Wilson used an error and a sacrifice fly to score two in the first, and Showers sent a two-run shot over the right-field fence for two more runs in the second inning.
Pikeville scored their lone run of the day on a two-out single in the top of the second.
After a scoreless third, Whelan hit a two-run home run of her own in the fourth to make it 6-1. The run-rule win was completed in the fifth as Travatia Bowden reached on a walk, Ericka Clifford bunted for a base hit and Firestein walked to load the bases. Showers followed with a two-run single and an error on the next batter allowed Firestein to score from third to end the game early.
Pikeville’s Lauren Barnes (2-2) suffered the loss giving up four runs – two earned – on three hits in 1-1/3 innings.
In the finale, Lindsey Wilson started fast again as Showers hit her second home run of the day – her 10th of the season – to put the Blue Raiders ahead 1-0 in the first.
In the second, Sydney Fourman doubled home Bowden and Fourman later scored on a double steal to make it 3-0.
Mize doubled the lead with one swing of the bat in the fifth inning as she hit a three-run blast to left field for the 6-0 lead.
The game came to an early end in the sixth as Whelan grounded out to score Firestein and Amanda Trampe singled home Showers for the 8-0 win.
Pikeville’s Hawley Ill (3-4) took the loss in the circle giving up six earned runs on nine hits in her five innings without a strikeout.
The Blue Raiders are back in action at Lindsey Wilson Park on Tuesday as they host St. Catharine (Ky.) in a doubleheader at 2 p.m. CT.