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Mules split season-opening series with MIT

On Saturday, Mar. 11, Colby Softball welcomed the MIT Engineers for a season-opening doubleheader. After a 19–15 season last year, with a 7–5 record in the NESCAC, the Mules looked to improve this season behind returning talent. 

The Mules and the Engineers faced off once last season, and the Engineers escaped with a narrow 5–4 win. 

In Saturday’s doubleheader, both games included the use of a designated hitter, which will be the case for the majority of the Mules’ contests this season. 

In the first game, Sam Ahlholm `23 started on the mound for Colby, facing off against MIT’s Caroline Langmeyer. The Engineers opened the scoring in the second inning when Haley Samuelsen hit a bases-loaded double, scoring two for MIT. Later in the frame, Ava Ladd stole home, extending the Engineers’ lead to three.

 Ahlholm escaped from a tough situation in the top of the third, surviving a bases-loaded, no-out jam by forcing two consecutive ground outs. 

Despite stealing two bases in the first three innings, the Mules were not able to bring the runners home. 

The Engineers kept the runs coming in the fifth, bringing an unearned run home before capitalizing on another two-run double, making it a 6–0 game. 

Some shaky MIT defense allowed the Mules to load the bases in the bottom of the fifth, as a hit-by-pitch, two walks, and an error brought an unearned run home for Colby. 

Following a pitching change with one out in the inning, MIT was able to close the door without allowing any further damage. 

The sixth inning was uneventful for both sides, with solid pitching preventing either offense from posing any threat. In the top of the seventh, KC DeSarno `26 made her collegiate pitching debut for the Mules, relieving Ahlholm, who finished with six earned runs on twelve hits while striking out three. Desarno had no trouble retiring the Engineers in the seventh, allowing only a single hit.

In the bottom of the frame, the Mules refused to quit, with Logan Leubbe `23 walking before Jackie Hill `23 launched a home run to bring the game to 6–3. The Engineers stood strong, taking the first game without allowing any further runs.

In the second game, Abby Orso `24 took the mound for the Mules, while Katie Katsuyama got the ball for the Engineers. 

The Mules got off to a quick start in the bottom of the first inning, as Hill continued a strong day at the plate by doubling Amanda Cabral `23 home.

 MIT couldn’t muster any offense in the second inning, being shut down by a Mules double play from Liv Menyo `24 to Brenna Forbes `23. 

The Mules proceeded to break the game open in their half of the inning, with a pair of RBI singles coming off the bats of Cabral and Forbes. Chloe Wilcox `24 then added a double to the offensive outburst, bringing two more Mules runs across the plate. 

The lone MIT run of the game came in the third inning, as Haley Samuelsen singled a run home.

 The Mules responded by tacking on another three runs in their half of the inning. Orso crushed a two-run home run before Cabral batted in another run, bringing the score to 8–1.

 The bats were quiet for both sides following an MIT pitching change, as Orso continued to dominate the Engineers’ lineup.

In the bottom of the sixth inning, Hill homered for a second time on the day, scoring two runs and securing a 10–1 win for the Mules. 

Orso was strong all game on the mound, finishing with six innings pitched, allowing only a single run on seven hits, while striking out seven.

The Mules now head to Florida from Mar. 18 to 25, playing ten games over the week against opponents, including Oberlin, Union, Grinnell, and Gustavus Adolphus.


~ Mason Groves `26

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