GVSU softball sweeps home-opening doubleheader against Ferris
Without a cloud in the sky and temperatures reaching the upper 40s, the No. 23 ranked Grand Valley State softball team was finally greeted by their fans during the team’s home-opening doubleheader against Ferris State on Sunday, March 18.
Fueled by more great pitching performances by Allison Lipovsky and Allie Grys, the Lakers shut out the Bulldogs, winning their contests 3-0 and 2-0, respectively. With the victories, GVSU extends their winning streak to seven games, improving their overall record to 15-5 (2-0 GLIAC).
The contests were originally scheduled for Wednesday, March 21, but were moved up due to the possibility of inclement weather.
Game one: GVSU 3, FSU 0
In the first game of the doubleheader, the Lakers scored the first run of the contest in the first inning. Senior Tegan Shomin led off the inning with a single and crossed the plate all the way from first base after freshman Taylor Rieger hit a double.
The second inning was quiet scoring-wise, but GVSU tacked on another run in the third after Nikoma Holmen hit a single through the right side of the field to help redshirt junior Kaylie Raynard score, giving GVSU a 2-0 lead.
The final GVSU run came after Holmen led the fifth inning with a double and shortly crossed the plate after a single by junior Shannon Flaherty scored the third run.
On the pitching side of things, Lipovsky dominated the strike zone against the Bulldogs, striking out 12 batters in a complete game outing and only allowing four runners on base (three hits, one hit-by-pitch). With the win, Lipovsky’s record on the season now stands at seven wins and two losses.
“I get myself in the mental state I need to be in, and we go out there; the only things I know are the batter I’m facing and what number in the order they are,” Lipovsky had previously told a Lanthorn reporter.
Game two: GVSU 2, FSU 0
With just a short break, the Lakers came out with Grys to complete the doubleheader sweep over the Bulldogs. The first inning was much more dramatic than the last contest, as the Bulldogs’ first two hitters recorded singles. Grys stayed composed and struck out the next two batters and forced a popup to end the early scare.
In the third inning, Shomin reached base off an error by the Ferris shortstop and quickly bolted to reach second base. Shortly after, another error by the Bulldogs advanced Shomin to third base. Holmen then stepped up to hit a frozen rope to the Ferris shortstop again, but once again, the Bulldogs made another error to score Shomin and give GVSU the 1-0 lead. Later that inning, Rieger scored after sophomore Kelcie LaTour grounded out to first base but gave enough time to run home.
After the first inning scare, Grys dominated the rest of the contest to capture her fifth victory of the season. The senior from Portland, Michigan, struck out six batters over the course of seven innings, allowing only four hits and one walk.
With so much early success from the Lakers, there’s been a sense of optimism throughout the clubhouse.
“This is one of the best teams I’ve ever played on, and I think as long as we don’t beat ourselves, we can go all the way,” Lipovsky had previously told a Lanthorn reporter. “Our staff is one of the best in the country, we have some of the most disciplined hitters and we work really hard on defense. When we play the game as best as we can play, there’s no team better than us.”
The Lakers will next face off at home against GLIAC foe Northwood University in a doubleheader Saturday, March 24, at the GVSU softball field.