Blackburn report: Softball wins four of five

PARAGOULD, Ark. (March 8, 2018) – Blackburn’s spring sports teams had a busy first weekend of the new season.

The softball team went on the road to Paragould, Ark. and went 4-1, nearly completing a comeback in the last game which would have netted them a 5-0 weekend trip.

The Beavers opened play against Ecclesia College on Friday, and rallied to win a 13-7 decision behind a 16-hit attack.

Blackburn trailed 5-2 before a six-run fifth and five-run sixth inning propelled them to victory.

Jensen Ballinger pitched four innings, while Brooke Daniels struck out five over the final three innings in the circle.

Offensively, Carlinville native Baylee Hughes has returned home, now playing for the Beavers. The shortstop went two for five with a stolen base and two runs scored.

Daniele Burnell went three for five with a homer run and two RBIs with three runs. Bobbi Morris also homered, driving in two runs. Daniels had two hits, two runs and two RBIs, and Halle Fransen had a double, two singles, two runs and three RBIs.

Blackburn 7, Crowley’s Ridge 6

Also on Friday, Blackburn edged Crowley’s Ridge 7-6.

The Beavers scored four runs in the first and added two insurance runs in the fifth in building a 7-3 lead, holding on to get the win.

Hughes had a single, RBI and run scored. Hannah Goett had two doubles and an RBI. Lexi Yockey had two hits and two runs, and Daniels had two hits and an RBI.

Fransen struck out two in getting the victory.

Blackburn 6, Ecclesia 4

On Saturday, Blackburn scored five runs in the third and held on for a 6-4 win over Ecclesia College.

Hughes would homer in the game, also scoring twice and adding a single in four at-bats. She also stole two bases.

Goett and Morris also hit two-run home runs for Blackburn during the five-run third inning.

Fransen struck out three in gaining the win.

Blackburn 11, Haskell 10

Saturday’s second game had the Beavers holding on to beat Haskell in a slugfest, 11-10.

The Beavers opened an 8-2 lead in the third inning and an 11-5 lead in the fourth.

Haskell rallied within 11-10 in the seventh with a pair of runs but the Beavers held on.

Hughes had three hits, stole a base and scored a run for Blackburn.

Goett and Abby Frerichs both homered. Frerichs drove in four runs and scored twice. Goett had three RBIs and two runs. Daniels also had two hits, two runs and two RBIs for Blackburn.

Daniels struck out six over three and two thirds innings of relief.

Haskell 6, Blackburn 5

On Sunday, the Beavers ended the trip with a 6-5 loss to Haskell.

Haskell led 5-0 in the fifth and 6-1 entering the bottom of the seventh.

Blackburn scored four times in the bottom of the seventh but came up short.

Hughes had a single, double, stolen base and run scored for the Beavers.

Yockey had three hits, and Morris hit a solo home run for the Beavers. Frerichs had two hits and an RBI and Fransen had two hits and an RBI.

Baseball

The Beavers went 1-2 in baseball action at Lenz Field in Jacksonville over the weekend.

On Saturday, Blackburn lost a 17-7 decision to Elmhurst.

The Beavers trailed just 9-7 after seven innings, but Elmhurst scored four in the eighth and four more in the ninth inning to win behind a 20-hit attack.

Blackburn was led offensively by Ryan Steen with four hits, including a double, driving in two runs. Shane Lewis, Steven Diaz and Brandon Smith, along with Walter Jarvis, all had two hits for the Beavers.

Blackburn 5, Lawrence 4

Also on Saturday, Blackburn picked up win number one of the young season by edging Lawrence University.

Blackburn led 2-0 after an inning but fell behind 3-2 by the third.

The Beavers with single runs in the third, fourth and fifth innings took a 5-3 lead.

It stayed that way until the ninth. Lawrence scored a run but came up a run shy.

Jarrett Sandlin went the first five innings, striking out seven while allowing one earned run on five hits. Lewis earned the save with three innings of relief, striking out three.

Ryan Steen homered, doubled, scored twice and drove in two, while Ry Clark had two hits, including a double, and two RBIs. Christian Padilla added an RBI and an hit.

Loras 8, Blackburn 1

On Sunday in Jacksonville, Loras College scored five runs in the first two innings and went on to beat Blackburn.

The Beavers’ run came in the eighth inning with a Lewis RBI-single. Diaz had two hits for Blackburn

Tyler Durand struck out three in seven innings but took the loss.

Golf

The Blackburn College men’s golf team competed in a dual match against Millikin University, at Oak Terrace Country Club in Pana March 3-4.

Millikin University brought two teams to the tournament, while the Beavers brought one team and two individuals.

Oak Terrace Country Club is home to what is called “The Shotmaker’s Mile”, this stretch of four holes is on the back nine holes of the course, and tests the average golfer to place the ball in certain spots on the course to even have the slightest chance to play well on that hole.

This however did not discourage the Beavers as they took on the course with full force. With the course being just a bit damp from the night before on Saturday, the Beavers put together a team score of 322. Senior Jordan McMillen led the way with a 76, while senior Trenton Easley and junior Anthony Harper were not far behind with a pair of 80s. Sophomore Matt Kinsella rounded out the scoring with an 86. After the first day, Blackburn found themselves trailing Millikin’s A team by just three shots.

On the second day, the Beavers found a little sunshine, however the course was still a little damp which made hitting out of the low spots difficult.

Blackburn went on to shoot 311 on the day, beating their first day score by eleven strokes. Easley led the Beavers with low round of the day, 73, while McMillen and Harper both shot 78s. Rounding out day two scoring for Blackburn was senior Kyle Kesinger who shot an 82.

Shot of the tournament, went to Easley who made eagle on the 265 yard par-4 15th, a daunting dog leg right with water all down the right side and around the green. With a 15 mph wind in his face, Easley decided to pull driver and attempt to hit one on the green.

Easley hit a near perfect shot as he shaped the ball left to right around the trees as the ball landed softly just two feet from the hole. Easley was the high finisher for Blackburn finishing second overall with a two day total of nine over par.

McMillen finished a solo fourth place shooting ten over par for the tournament, while Anthony Harper finished in a tie for fifth overall with a two day total of 14 over par. This marks the Beavers third tournament win in a row carrying over from the fall season.

The Beavers next tournament will take place over Spring Break as the team heads to Longview, Texas to compete in the Yellow Jacket Spring Invite, on March 12th and 13th.