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Vikings Fall to Bowling Green to Close Out Weekend

Vikings Fall to Bowling Green to Close Out Weekend

CLEVELAND, Ohio - The Cleveland State Vikings were swept in a doubleheader against Bowling Green on Saturday at the Krenzler Bubble, falling 2-0 before faltering late in an 8-7 loss that needed nine innings to decide a victor.

Game One – Falcons 2, Vikings 0

Jenna Watts shined while logging a complete game in her first collegiate start, but the Vikings' bats were could not muster any run support in the opening contest.

Bowling Green tagged Watts for an RBI single in the first frame and drove in a run via sacrifice fly in the second. From there, the freshman settled in and retired 12 of the next 14 batters.

Across her seven innings of work, Watts allowed a pair of runs on six hits along with two punchouts.

Falcons starter Haley Gotschall held Cleveland State hitless with her second straight seven-inning effort, recording 16 strikeouts without issuing a walk.

Game Two – Falcons 8, Vikings 7 (9 innings)

Cleveland State exploded for six runs over the first three innings in the second game, but a late Bowling Green comeback ultimately downed the Vikings.

The Falcons found the first run on a throwing error in the top of the opening frame, but Vikings starter Taylor Betz forced a groundout with a runner in scoring position to limit the damage.

Sydney Bajusz set the tone for Cleveland State's offense with a leadoff ground-rule double to left-center field before Taylor Duncan brought her home with an RBI single to tie it at 1-1

After Becky Hurosky took a pitch to the head, Gabby Shackelford unleashed a three-run blast down the left field line for a 4-1 Vikings lead.

The onslaught continued in the second frame when Bajusz followed a leadoff walk with a two-run bomb of her own, putting Cleveland State ahead 6-1. Bowling Green opted to reinsert Gotschall after Duncan drew a two-out walk.

With runners on second and third in the third inning, Bajusz struck again with a single up the middle, scoring Alexa Sieger for a 6-1 edge. Jenna Deang nearly scored as well but was thrown out at home plate to end the inning.

The tides began to turn when Bowling Green notched an RBI ground-rule double with runners at first and second in the fourth frame to cut into the deficit. The play could have set the Falcons up for a big inning, but Cleveland State successfully appealed that the runner who began the play at first base missed the bag at second, resulting in an automatic out.

Immediately after, believing the inning to be over, the Falcons baserunner retreated to her dugout. However, with only two outs recorded, the inning was ruled automatically over because the runner left her base, resulting in an out. After a lengthy discussion between the umpires, Cleveland State got out of the situation up 6-2.

Bowling Green rallied for four runs in the sixth to tie it at 6-6, but only two were earned off Betz.

With the international tiebreaker rule in effect, the Falcons broke the tie in the ninth frame with a leadoff double down the left field line to bring home the runner who started at second base. The Vikings threatened with runners at the corners with two outs in the ninth, but a game-ending strikeout halted Cleveland State's comeback chances.

Betz battled through eight full innings, giving up four earned runs on 10 hits with six K's and a pair of walks. Betz started the ninth inning but was replaced by Hanna Griffin, who made her second appearance of the weekend recorded all three outs without allowing a hitter to reach base.

Bajusz finished 3-for-5 with a home run, three RBI and a pair of runs scored while Frascone notched a pair of hits and Duncan logged a hit and drew a walk. Bowling Green held a 10-8 advantage in hits overall.

Up Next
The Vikings kickoff a 12-game road trip next weekend with doubleheaders against the College of Charleston (Feb. 19) and Charleston So. (Feb 20).