NEWBERRY — The Wolves hosted the Valkyries of Converse College on Wednesday afternoon taking both games with scores of 7-6 and 8-0 in five innings.
Game One was a duel between these two teams as the lead was tossed back and forth, ultimately favoring the Wolves, 7-6. In the opening inning, Converse found themselves on board first with a run driven in via double to center field sending a Valkyrie home to score.
Newberry answered back immediately with two runs giving the game its first lead change of the afternoon. McKenzie Barneycastle doubled to right field and proceeded to third base in the middle of Tori Caldwell’s at bat. Caldwell later walked and Barneycastle went on to score for the Wolves. Haley Simonds cranked out a deep triple to left field that scored Caldwell who recently found her way to second base. The Wolves would head the Valkyries 2-1 going into the top of the second.
Both teams would go silent in the following inning with Converse nabbing two hits and leaving one stranded. Newberry’s one hit left two on base.
Offense for the Valkyries amped up in the third as they were able to bring three runners home. A single up the middle and a double to right field gave the lead back to Converse at 4-2.
The fifth and the sixth innings aided Converse’s lead by way of two runs. The fifth saw a single to left field drive home a pinch runner while the sixth advanced a runner on a wild pitch.
Newberry battled back into the contest in the bottom of the sixth after falling behind 6-2 to Converse. Starting Valkyrie pitcher, Jianna Pellegrino kept the Wolves at bay for 5.1 innings, but would be chased by offensive eruption from Newberry in the middle of the inning.
Barneycastle got the offense going with a single up the middle. Pinch hitting for Caldwell was Ashely Willis who singled into right field moving Barneycastle to second. Natalie Willis was next to bat for the Wolves and singled down the right field line propelling her sister to third and scoring Barneycastle.
Simonds kept the momentum going on another triple, this time to right field, and scored the Willis sisters. Allison Van Atta, Paige Meyer and Maggie Herrera all tallied singles to score runners and put Newberry back in control of the game with the lead 7-6.
The Valkyries couldn’t mount a successful bout in the top of the seventh, leaving one on base after one hit.
Starting Newberry pitcher, Emily Marchbanks pitched two innings, threw 58 pitches with 33 of them being strikes. She was relieved by Chelsey Cunningham who went through four innings tossing 75 total pitches and 38 strikes. Simonds also made an appearance in the circle with nine pitches and more than half being strikes.
Game Two was a dominate showing all-around for the Wolves as they concluded the matchup with an 8-0 advantage in five innings. Their only scoreless inning was the fourth as every other inning produced at least one run.
Newberry got out to a very hot start posting five runs in the opening inning. N. Willis singled to the shortstop sending Meyer to second and a very active Barneycastle home. Simonds’ double down the left field line cleared the other bases as Meyer and N. Willis rounded to home. A. Willis’ reach on an error shifted Van Atta and scored Simonds. To conclude the barreling was Haley Wildes who although grounded out to the shortstop still brought Van Atta home to see a 5-0 lead over the Valkyries.
The second and third innings added three runs to Newberry’s leaping lead. In the second, N. Willis’ single up the middle drove in Barneycastle. Simonds then grounded out to the shortstop but nabbed a run by Willis before the play was over. Barneycastle’s double to center field in the third inning led Wildes home to score Newberry’s final run of the game at eight.
Alyssa Ball spent four innings on the mound for the Wolves and nabbed her sixth win of the season. Ball only allowed one hit on 40 pitches and 23 strikes. She was relieved by Simonds who tossed the final inning of the game giving up just one hit like Ball, on 17 pitches. Combined Newberry’s pitching kept Converse to two hits on 19 different at bats.
Notable hitters on the day for Newberry were Barneycastle, N. Willis, Simonds, and Van Atta. Each Wolf nabbed at least one run, on multiple hits, and an RBI.