Transylvania softball employs home run derby in road sweep of Bluffton

Mumford swinging

Bluffton, Ohio – The Transylvania softball team displayed its full might and power in another Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference sweep, shutting out the Bluffton University Beavers 11-0 in game one and prevailing 12-1 in game two on Saturday afternoon at Bluffton Field.

Each win came in a run-rule-shortened five-inning contest as Brittany Mumford went 6-for-8 between both games while Kameron Bowling produced her fifth shutout of the year in Saturday's opener. Jessica Gunter pitched a day-ending masterpiece two-hitter as Bluffton was held in check by the Pioneers all afternoon.  

The Pioneers improved to 22-10 overall and 12-2 in Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference play while the Beavers fell to 7-29 overall and 2-12 in conference play.

Transylvania overwhelmed Bluffton in game one by scoring at least one run in all five innings played, including a five-run inning in the top of the fifth to close the door on the Beavers. Mumford started the day with a lead-off home run to right field and the Pioneers never looked back. Jessica Powell added a second run in the first, scoring Shelby Gambrell on an RBI groundout to give the Pioneers a 2-0 lead.

As the Pioneers tacked on additional runs in the second and third inning, Bowling continued to confound Beaver hitters from the circle as she climbed over the 100-strikeout mark for her 2019 season with a seven-strikeout afternoon. The sophomore conceded just two hits and one walk as the Pioneers put the Beavers to bed early.

The final outburst came in the top of the fifth inning as Laurel Major, Becca Messing, Annie Schuck, and Taylor Stamps all delivered RBIs to place the Pioneers in an 11-0 advantage.

Schuck finished 2-for-3 at the plate with an RBI while Mumford went 3-for-4 and finished a triple short of the cycle. Bowling's record moved to 13-5 on the season with the win from the rubber.  

In game two, the Pioneers increased their intensity by once again making quick work of the Beavers in a nearly instant replay of the first game. Mumford led off the nightcap with another power hit, a double to left centerfield. Gambrell followed by drawing a walk, while Schuck and Powell each fouled away for two outs. But Meg Liter kept the inning alive with another base on balls to load the bases. Janelle Hynes ignited the offense, delivering a two-out double to left center to clear the bases and provide the go-ahead 3-0 lead for the Pioneers.

Alyssa Nunn added to a 4-0 Transy lead in the third on a two-run homer that also brought home Hynes as the game quickly teetered towards the Pioneers' favor as the visitors increased their advantage to 6-0. Bluffton found its lone run of the day in the bottom of the third before the Pioneers pounced upon the Beavers even harder in the fifth; Liter hammered a three-run homer in the fourth as the Pioneers raised their lead to 10-1.

Mumford put the finishing touches on a powerful afternoon with her second home run of the day in the top of the fifth to craft an insurmountable lead against Bluffton. The senior finished game two 3-for-4 with a home run and two doubles. Hynes was the other Pioneer with a multihit showing in game two.

Saturday marked the first time this season in which the Pioneers won a pair of doubleheader games in five innings. The Pioneers also finished the day having scored at least one run in all 10 innings in which they batted.

Gunter finished with a game two line of four strikeouts to three walks, with two hits and one earned allowed as she improved to 7-4.

Transylvania returns to play on Sunday as the Pioneers continue a northern HCAC road trip. The Pioneers will close out their HCAC regular season schedule with an afternoon doubleheader against the Manchester University Spartans in North Manchester, Indiana. First pitch between the Spartans and Pioneers is set for 1:00 p.m. at Spartan Softball Field.

For more on Transylvania softball, follow @TransySoftball on Twitter