April 29, 2013 - The 2013 season came to a close for the Hillsdale College softball team on a summer-like Monday afternoon at Johnny Williams Field.
In a doubleheader that was on its fourth rescheduled date, the Chargers split a doubleheader with Saginaw Valley State University, winning the first game 3-2 before falling in the nightcap 6-5. The Chargers finish the campaign with an overall record of 11-21 and 10-15 in the GLIAC. The team's second game against Malone earlier this month counted only for conference standings purposes, and will not count in the team's official final record.
It was a rare situation where the seniors on Hillsdale's team - Taylor Schulty, Miriam McKay (pictured), Teresa Patterson, Brittany Hulett, Amber Fausneaucht and Kate Hoop - knew going into the game that this would be their last. And all six contributed to the Charger cause throughout the doubleheader.
McKay hit a solo home run in the second game, while Hoop had two hits and two runs batted in during her final game. Schulty was 2-for-3 with a run batted in during Hillsdale's 3-2 victory.
Hulett (pitcher), Patterson (outfield) and Fausneaucht (first base) all started game two for the Chargers, with Patterson getting a hit and scoring a run.
SVSU jumped out to a 2-0 lead in game one, only to see the Chargers bounce back to tie the score with two in the bottom of the third. Junior Kristi Gordon provided the game-winning run with a long solo home run to left field.
Freshman Sarah Klopfer won her fifth game of the season with a seven-inning outing on the mound. She had five strikeouts versus just one walk in recording the victory.
The score was tied three times in game two before the Cardinals broke through in the bottom of the seventh to pick up a walk-off victory. Freshman Sarah Grunert hit a deep fly ball to left with the bases loaded in the top of the seventh, but the ball was caught on the warning track.
Grunert's .404 average goes down as the 10th-best batting average in a season in school history. She figures to be a central part of a bright future for Charger softball, which features a talented freshman class coming in for the 2014 season.