Leanna Pittsenbarger tosses no-hitter against East Tennessee State
RICHMOND, Ky. -- Junior Leanna Pittsenbarger tossed her second career no-hitter in the opener against East Tennessee State, highlighting Eastern Kentucky's doubleheader sweep against the visiting Bucs. EKU won by scores of 5-0 and 4-3.
In Game 1, Pittsenbarger struck out 12 Bucs while allowing just one batter to reach base following a walk in the second inning. He now has 11 wins this season, seven of which have been of the shutout variety. Pittsenbarger has notched at least 10 strikeouts in three consecutive starts.
The Colonel defense picked up Pittsenbarger with a couple of key plays as well. In the fourth inning, junior Lauren Mitchell made a sliding stop at second base to prevent a Jackie Baird ground ball to get through the infield. One inning later, sophomore Kayla Joyce made a diving catch in center field to end the fifth inning.
Eastern Kentucky (16-12) would get all the runs it would need in the second when Mitchell came through with a two-out RBI double down the left field line. Freshman Krislyn Campos added a run-scoring single in the fifth while junior Shannon McQueen blasted a solo home run, a laser just over the left field fence, in the sixth inning.
Game two ended in dramatic fashion with the Colonels scoring all four runs in the bottom of the seventh to earn the come-from-behind 4-3 victory.
East Tennessee State (14-17) got on the board first thanks to a Danielle Knoetze solo home run in the sixth. Casey Horner chipped in with a two-run homer later in the frame to put the Bucs ahead, 3-0.
ETSU starting pitcher Taylor Carter had limited the Colonel offense to three hits through the first six innings, but the home team came through in the seventh. Eastern Kentucky began the bottom of the seventh with five consecutive singles. McQueen got the Colonels on the board with an RBI single through the left side.
Freshman Amber Murray followed with a dribbler in front of the plate that ended up as another RBI single. East Tennessee State finally got an out when Mitchell hit into a fielder’s choice. However, sophomore Sarah Fobbs scored on the play to even the game at 3-all.
Later in the inning with two outs and runners on first and second, Joyce hit a ground ball up the middle of the infield. ETSU’s second baseman bobbled the ball allowing Mitchell to score the winning run from second base.