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Central Michigan Life – CMU softball finds series finale over Miami (OH)

Vaseline 2 months ago

With two outs and the bases loaded, freshman catcher Carly Sleeman hit a grand slam over the fence to left field, increasing Central Michigan’s softball lead against Miami (OH) 6-1 and continuing the momentum for the Chippewas.

The RedHawks came into the matchup with the series clinched, the top seed in the Mid-American Conference and a 23-game win streak on their resume.

Central Michigan held the lead all game after the first inning to secure the 9-5 win, snapping Miami’s win streak and adding the first loss to Miami’s MAC schedule.

“As a program, we’re in our second year of prominence and we’re seeing pitchers make some adjustments,” head coach McCall Salmon said. “I thought that was clear today. I thought Allyssa Hollo and Michaleigh Vallimont maybe haven’t done as well as they would like offensively, but they just settled in this weekend and stuck to the process and a lot of great things happened for them.

Miami (OH) was the first to get on the board in the top of the first inning, with a double to center field. However, senior pitcher Grace Lehto struck out two early and allowed only one RedHawk run.

Lehto struck out seven, threw all seven innings and collected 141 pitches.

“We know how good they are offensively, but I also thought we did some things well yesterday that we could take with us today,” Salmon said. “I just loved their approach from the first inning, getting on board.”

Central Michigan responded quickly in the bottom of the first inning. Senior centerfielder Abbey Tolmie walked in the first at bat of the day. Freshman design hitter Keira Tolmie doubled to right field in the next at bat and was able to advance to third base and bring in Abbey Tolmie on an error by Miami.

Junior Allyssa Hollo hit a grounder up the middle, bringing in Keira Tolmie and giving the Chippewas the early 2-1 lead.

“Every MAC win you get is extremely important because our focus is on making the MAC tournament,” Salmon said.

CMU heated up the heat on both sides of the ball in the second inning when Sleeman hit a grand slam in the bottom of the second to extend the lead to five.

Both teams each added a run in the third inning. Senior right fielder Michaleigh Vallimont singled up the middle to bring in sophomore pinch runner Angela Petrovich, preserving CMU’s 7-2 lead.

The Chippewas scored two runs in the bottom of the fourth inning to continue their strong offensive performance. Both Sleeman and Abbey Tolmie scored off errors to extend the lead 9-2.

Despite a two-run home run attempt by Miami in the top of the seventh, Allyssa Hollo secured the victory for the Chippewas with a grounder by Miami to first base.

Central Michigan improves to 13-26 overall and 10-7 in conference play as they travel to South Bend, Indiana on Tuesday to face Notre Dame at 3 p.m.