OMAHA, Neb. – The Creighton softball team swept a doubleheader against Providence by scores of 9-6 and 2-0 at the CU Sports Complex on Saturday afternoon.
Creighton (28-23. 9-10 BIG EAST) trailed early in game one against Providence (6-28, 4-14 BIG EAST) but a four-run fourth gave the Jays a lead it would not surrender. In game two CU scored in its first at-bat and added a solo home run in the fifth to win 2-0. The Friars threatened throughout the game but left 14 runners on base and could not plate a run against senior Alexis Cantu.
On senior weekend, Cantu and classmates Blair Lowe and Ellen Homan combined for 11 hits on the day. Cantu and fellow senior Becca Changstrom also collected wins in the circle for the Jays. Cantu, junior Liz Dike and freshman Jen Daro each connected on a home run for Creighton.
Creighton is still in contention for a spot in the BIG EAST Softball Championship next week. In order for the Bluejays to advance they would need to defeat Providence a third time and have DePaul win at Butler on Sunday.
Changstrom started game one in the circle for the Jays.
Providence jumped out to an early 1-0 lead in the top of the second on a solo home run. The Friars doubled the lead in the third to 2-0 with a single, sacrifice bunt and another single.
Creighton exploded for four runs in the bottom of the third to take the lead at 4-2. Sophomore Kelsey Allender reached first on a dropped third strike and passed ball to open the inning. A bunt single by Lowe put runners on the corners. Dike reached on a Friars error to score a run and put two in scoring position. Cantu’s towering home run down the right field line cleared the bases and put CU up by two.
PC scored two in the top of the fourth frame to knot the score at 4-4. Three walks loaded the bases before a two-out, two-RBI double helped Providence tie the score.
But Creighton added three more runs in the bottom of the inning to take the lead for good. A one-out bunt single by Allender started the CU rally. Lowe then doubled and Homan reached on a fielder’s choice that saw Allender thrown out at home. Sophomore Erin McGonigal came on to pinch run for Homan at first. Then it was Dike’s turn to hit a ball out the park with a homer to left center to put Creighton in front 7-4.
The Friars plated a run for the fourth consecutive inning in the fifth. After a single and a walk, CU junior Mac Millspaugh came in to pitch for Changstrom in the fifth inning. A two-out, two RBI double closed Providence to within one at 7-6.
Creighton added two more runs in the bottom of the sixth. Back-to-back singles from freshman Allie Reinhart and Allender started the inning. A two-out single from Homan scored a run. A triple by Dike added another for the final score.
Changstrom gained the win to improve to 16-12 on the year and Millspaugh earned her first career save as a Bluejay.
Cantu started game two for the Jays.
CU scored in the bottom of the first frame. Lowe led off with a bunt single. A sacrifice bunt by Homan and an RBI single off of Cantu’s bat would score Lowe for an early 1-0 advantage.
After three scoreless innings, CU added another run in the bottom of fifth when Daro homered down the left field line to open the inning. The 2-0 Bluejay lead held for the rest of the game as Providence stranded 14 runners on base.
Cantu earned the complete game win to improve to 6-7 on the year.
The Bluejays finish their regular season slate against Providence on Sunday with first pitch slated for 11 a.m. CT.
VB: Villanova at Creighton (11/21/14)
MBB: Creighton vs. Oklahoma Highlights (11/19/14)
MBB Chicago State at Creighton Highlights (11/16/14)