The Seward County Lady Saints softball team continued their forte of rock-solid pitching and timely hitting led them to two more Jayhawk West Conference wins Wednesday afternoon at Lady Saints Field against Barton to move them to 8-2 in conference play. Both teams were quiet on the offensive end early in game one as Seward managed just a 1st inning single while Barton was hitless through 3. After Erin Roufosse mowed through the middle of the Barton order 1-2-3 in the top half of the 4th, Seward was able to crack the scoreboard first in the bottom half of the inning. Brianna Baron led off the inning with a double and was driven in with a one out single up the middle from Kelsea Blackstock to make it 1-0 Seward.


Roufosse would keep the Lady Cougars at bay in the 5th and 6th innings, coaxing 4 ground balls to go along with 2 strikeouts to keep the score 1-0 in favor of the Lady Saints. Seward would break through offensively in the bottom of the 6th inning as Marisa Coats singled to start the rally and Baron walked after her to set up a two on no out situation for red hot Brittany Kent. Kent wasted no time in taking advantage of the RBI opportunity by lacing the first pitch she saw into the left field corner for a triple to plate both runs before coming in to score herself on an RBI groundout from Lynda Musick to add an insurance run and make it 4-0 in favor of Seward. Barton would pick up their first hit of the game off of Roufosse to open the 7th inning but wouldn’t be able to push anything across the plate as the Seward ace ended the game in style with her seventh strikeout of the game to come away with the 4-0 win. Roufosse allowed just the one hit while punching out 7 and walking just 1. She has now given up just 1 earned run in her last 57 innings, good for a .12 ERA over that span. Seward managed just 5 hits in the win with Coats, Baron, and Kent scoring all 4 Lady Saints runs.


To start the second game each team went 1-2-3 in the 1st and left a pair of runners stranded in the 2nd. A great defensive play by Alicia Reyes got the Lady Saints out of trouble in the 3rd and took the momentum into the bottom half of the inning as Shelby Casey doubled and was knocked in by Marisa Coats to put Seward up 1-0. Neither team scored in the 4th inning and Sydney Cicchetti worked around an error in the 5th inning to keep Barton off the board and after 4 ˝ the score remained 1-0 Seward. The Lady Saints did something in the dugout to wake up their bats in the bottom of the 5th as Leah Sitter, Reyes, and Casey hit three consecutive singles to open the frame with Casey driving the other two home to put Seward up 3-0. The Lady Cougars would get their leadoff hitters on in the 6th and 7th innings but would be able to advance them no further than 2nd base as Cicchetti stepped up big in the circle to earn herself her 5th shutout win of the year in the Lady Saints 3-0 victory. The Seward freshman struck out 5 and walked just 1 while allowing just 4 hits in the complete game win. Seward again struggled to have much consistency on the offensive end as Casey was the only Lady Saint to have more than one hit in the win. Sitter and Reyes both finished with a hit and a run scored in the win while Coats had the only RBI outside of Casey’s pair in the 4-0 win.


With the victories the Lady Saints now have a cool 11 game win streak working and have not been dented in the ‘L’ column in over 3 weeks. They are now 36-7 on the season and stay atop the conference standings at 8-2 with their BuCo Classic Tournament up next on the schedule this weekend. However, even with the 11 game winning streak intact and 8 of the 11 wins coming via shutout, the Lady Saints managed to drop to #10 from #9 in the latest NJCAA National Rankings.