Lady Pios clinch OAC Tourney bid with split against ONU

Marietta College locked up a spot in the 2014 Ohio Athletic Conference Softball Tournament Friday afternoon after splitting a doubleheader with Ohio Northern University. The Polar Bears took game one, 7-0, and the Pioneers won the nitecap, 6-3.

Marietta (20-12 overall, 11-5 OAC) is currently in first place in the league standings. The Pioneers will be looking to earn the No. 1 seed and the right to host the OAC Tournament next Saturday when they travel to John Carroll to close out the regular season.

Ohio Northern (17-16 overall, 10-6 OAC) banged out 12 hits in the first game and used a five-run fourth inning to get the win. Five different Polar Bears had two hits in the game.

While the ONU offense was piling up the hits, freshman Paige Ordean (12-8) was throwing a no-hitter. Ordean worked all 7.0 innings walking five Pioneers.

Junior Alexis O’Hair (10-6) took the loss pitching 3.0 innings and giving up four runs on seven hits. Courtney Kerwood allowed three runs on five base hits in 4.0 innings of relief.

Game two belonged to Marietta sophomore Trinity Schlabach. Schlabach (8-6) earned the win on the mound pitching 5.2 innings and giving up three runs on seven hits. At the plate, she went 3-for-4 with a double and a solo home run.

Marietta jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the second inning and never trailed. Schlabach led off with a double to the wall in left center, Marietta’s first hit of the day. Following a strikeout, Kelsey Kallenborn walked and Hannah Tarski singled to load the bases.

Kaitlin Klinchock and Brittany Curry worked bases-loaded walks to force in Marietta’s two runs.

The Polar Bears cut the MC lead in half with a run in the top of the third. In the bottom of the inning, Schlabach crushed a solo shot over the wall in left center for a 3-1 Pioneer lead. It was Schlabach’s second home run of the season.

Aided by an Ohio Northern error, the Pioneers added three unearned runs in the fifth.

The big blow was a two-run double from pinch hitter Jayla Graves.

Schlabach got into trouble in the sixth and Marietta head coach Jeanne Arbuckle went to the bullpen. O’Hair was called on the shut the door on the Polar Bears and she did just that. O’Hair pitched 1.1 shutout innings to notch her first save of the season.

Freshman Kirsten Burden (5-8) went the distance in the circle for Ohio Northern. She allowed six runs on nine hits in 6.0 innings. Burden walked five and struck out six.

In addition to Schlabach’s three-hit performance, Kallenborn finished 2-for-2 with a double.

Marietta plays a 3:30 p.m. doubleheader at Bethany College on Tuesday before finishing the regular season at John Carroll on Saturday.