BELTON — The Howard Payne Lady Jackets remained undefeated in American Southwest Conference West Division softball action by sweeping a doubleheader at Mary Hardin-Baylor, 2-1 and 3-0, Friday.
The Lady Jackets improved to 4-0 in ASC West action and 9-8 overall, while Mary Hardin-Baylor slipped to 3-3 in league action and 8-8 overall. The final two games of the series will be played at noon today.
During HPU’s 2-1 victory, the Lady Jackets scored single runs in successive innings, the fourth and fifth.
Tylene Middleton doubled for Howard Payne to begin the fourth, then Shandi Winstead reached on an error which allowed Middleton to score.
Then, with two outs in the fifth inning, ASC West preseason player of the year Katie Poerner launched a solo home run that proved to be the difference in the game.
Mary Hardin-Baylor quickly trimmed the deficit to 2-1 in the bottom of the fifth when Dayton Kunz singled home Hollie Chennault with one out, but UMHB left two stranded in that inning and could not complete the comeback.
Haleigh Caraway went the distance in the circle for HPU, surrendering one run on six hits with one strikeout.
The Lady Jackets finished with five hits, including two from Evangelina Tellez and one each by Poerner, Middleton and Carissa Zarate.
During the 3-0 victory, Baillie Trumble hurled a four-hit shutout in which she issued just one walk.
Offensively, HPU put runs on the board in the first, third and seventh innings.
Middleton walloped her eighth homer of the season in the first, Poerner drilled her second blast of the day in the third and Tellez’s RBI single plated Larisa Salazar with the final run.
Howard Payne finished with six hits as a team as again Tellez led the charge with two. Poerner, Middleton, Winstead and Caraway chipped in one apiece.