Saline Softball Sweeps Lincoln to Claim SEC Red Title
It was one year ago that the Saline softball team entered the final week of the season needing one win to clinch the SEC Red title, only to have Ypsilanti Lincoln spoil the Hornets title hopes with a doubleheader sweep and claim the SEC Red title.
Fast-forward one year and the same situation arose when the Hornets hosted Lincoln Monday and needed one win to clinch the league title and this time Saline came through with a doubleheader sweep of the Splitters on Senior Night to earn the Red championship.
The opener was a pitcher's duel between the Hornets Karli Dorr and Lincoln's Lily Majeske.
Dorr allowed just four hits in the game and Majeske held Saline to two hits, but the Hornets were able to manufacture a pair of runs in the bottom of the fourth and that is all Dorr would need.
Emily Sweetland was hit by a pitch with one out and she moved to third on a Leah Holloway single. Delaney Lee laid down a squeeze bunt and Sweetland beat the throw home to give Saline a 1-0 lead. A wild pitch moved the runners up to second and third and Izzy Deveau laid down another squeeze bunt that scored Amelia DeCook, who had run for Lee to give Saline a 2-0 lead.
Lincoln would put a runner on in each of the last three innings, including a leadoff single in the seventh, but Dorr struck out the final three batters to end the game and give the Hornets the SEC Red title.
Dorr struck out 16 Splitters in the game and walked just one.
The Hornets put an exclamation point on the title with a 12-2 mercy in the second game.
Saline put four runs on the board in the first inning and two more in the second for an early 6-0 lead.
They would end the game in the fifth with a rbi double by Clara Cherry and run scoring triple by Sweetland for the 12-2 win.
Cherry finished with two hits and three rbi to lead the offense.
Sweetland had two hits and two rbi, while Kaleigh McClelland added two hits and one rbi. Lily Evans chipped in with two hits and a run scored, while Sydney Hastings, Deveau, and Lee each had a hit and rbi, and DeCook a hit and run scored.
Deveau allowed seven hits and struck out one for the win in the circle for the Hornets.
Saline will prep for next weekend's district tournament with a doubleheader against Northville Wednesday and at New Boston Huron next Tuesday.
Saline improved to 18-1 in the SEC Red and 28-6 overall.
Photos by Dawn McCann