The Kalamazoo Valley Community College softball team dug out of big holes in both of their walk-off victories Tuesday over Muskegon Community College. In their first home game of the spring, the Cougars erased a six-run hole in the bottom of the seventh inning for a 14-12 win. In the second game, they narrowly avoided the mercy rule and overcame an eight-run deficit for a 10-9 win in eight innings.
In the first game, the Cougars didn’t lead until the game-winning home run by Amber Mazahem. Muskegon scored once in the first and four times in the second inning for an early 5-0 lead. KVCC didn’t get a hit until the fourth inning, where they added their first three runs of the game. Both teams traded runs over the next few innings, with the Jayhawks holding a 12-6 lead into the bottom of the seventh.
The inning began and ended with Mazahem, as her lead-off single was followed by a double, triple, out, home run (Dylan King), double, out, and double. Following the sixth hit of the inning, starting pitcher Morgan Engelsman was pulled for Kirsten Johnson, who gave up a walk, followed by the Mazahem three-run homer to end it.
Listen to the winning home run below:
Engelsman finished with 6.2 innings pitched, 12 hits allowed, 12 runs, two walks and five strikeouts. Kalamazoo Valley pitcher Kayli Bowen allowed 14 hits, 10 runs, two walks with one strikeout. Offensively for the Cougars, Mazahem had three hits, two runs and four RBI. Emma Nuyen had two hits and two runs. Amber Foerster scored thrice and Hunter Hart had four RBI off a double and home run. For the Jayhawks, Yogi Hang had two hits and four RBI. Briana Mairose had three hits, two runs and two RBI. Alessa Buchner added three RBI and two runs on one hit.
The Cougars began game two ahead thanks to Nuyen scoring in the first shortly after getting a triple. The Jayhawks evened the game in the third on a Mairose solo home run, then exploded for seven runs in the fourth. Muskegon scored once more in the top of the fifth inning for an eight-run lead, but KVCC got one run in the bottom of the frame to avoid the eight-run mercy rule. The Cougars then used five hits and three doubles to pick up five runs in the bottom of the sixth and got two more runs in the seventh to force extras at 9-9. Foerster led off the bottom of the eighth with a single and was brought in after Maggie Mullen’s single to left was followed by an error.
Listen to the winning hit here:
Mullen started the game pitching and went 3.1 innings, allowing five hits, eight runs, and seven walks with three strikeouts. Bowen relived her and held firm, allowing only three hits, one run, and two walks over 4.2 innings. Offensively, Ally Sinclair went 4-4 with three runs and a RBI. Nuyen picked up a double and triple with two runs and three RBI and Mullen finished offensively with three hits and two runs. Muskegon starting pitching Kirsten Johnson pitched 5.1 innings with 10 hits, seven runs, and two walks allowed. Yogi Hang went the final two innings, allowing four hits and four runs.
The Cougars remain unbeaten in MCCAA play, moving to 6-0 with an overall record of 12-3. Muskegon drops to 6-4 in the MCCAA and 13-8 overall. Both teams have busy weekends ahead. Kalamazoo Valley hosts Jackson Thursday, hosts Lansing Friday, travels to Kellogg Saturday, and hosts Glen Oaks Sunday. Muskegon goes to Lansing Thursday, to Grand Rapids Friday, then to Kankakee, Illinois Saturday and Sunday for a tournament.
Listen back to both of Tuesday’s games below: