Panther Softball Goes 4 For 5; Top Newman

After a scoreless fourth the Panthers added to their lead in the fifth with Ryan driving in Lilly Swatos who had doubled to lead off the inning giving EP a 5-3 lead.
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Dan Eyrich, AP Sports

The EP Panthers picked up an impressive win defeating conference rival Newman 6-5 in Prophetstown on Friday concluding a five games in six days stretch for the Panthers in which they went 4-1. The Panthers scored the go-ahead run in the sixth inning to grab the win over the Comets.

Freshman, Wynn Renkes started in the circle for EP with both teams posting one run in the first inning with a scoreless second.

The Comets took the lead in the top of the third with a double driving in two runners who had walked to put Newman up 3-1. The Panthers responded in the bottom of the third scoring twice with Hannah Ryan drawing a bases-loaded walk scoring Jaylynn Hamilton who had walked to start the inning. A single by Paezleigh Hudgin drove in Sydney Schwartz who had doubled to put the Panthers up 4-3 after three.

After a scoreless fourth the Panthers added to their lead in the fifth with Ryan driving in Lilly Swatos who had doubled to lead off the inning giving EP a 5-3 lead.

The Comets tied the game in the sixth with a two run home run.

The Panthers regained the lead in their half of the sixth after Chloe Slock and Hamilton started the inning with walks. They were driven in by Swatos with her second double of the game to put EP back in the lead 6-5.

With one out in the seventh Renkes gave up a single then shutdown the next two Comets to get the win. The freshman gave up 7 hits in seven innings, 5 earned runs, struck out 9 and walked 7.

Paezleigh Hudgin collected 3 hits in the win driving in 2. Lilly Swatos had 2 hits with an RBI, Sydney Schwartz had 2 knocks and scored twice, and Hannah Ryan contributed a hit and 2 RBIs.

After the long week, first year head coach Carl Weidel said he is excited with what he is seeing with his team. Freshman Wynn Renkes has emerged as the Panthers top pitcher with Weidel saying. “She has no lack of confidence and she also has the knowledge to work around opposing hitters on occasion. She has had some games where she has had some control problems, which have led to giving hitters good hitters’ counts, which makes it tough.”

The lineup continues to evolve with the team recently getting a lot of good plate appearances up and down the lineup. “We had our number eight and number nine hitters (Chloe Slock and Lillian McWilliams) hit back-to-back home runs against Orion last week, which was nice. It was a great week and we’ve had a lot of contributors throughout the lineup. We’ve had hits and we had good pitching from several players.”

With the win the Panthers even their record at 5-5 and will host the Sherrard Tigers on Monday.

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