Shockers dominate Pittsburg State in fall-opener

Neleigh+Herring+celebrates+after+hitting+a+home+run+during+WSUs+game+against+Pittsburgh+State+on+Sept.+20+at+Wilkins+Stadium.

Rachel Rudisill / The Sunflower

Neleigh Herring celebrates after hitting a home run during WSU’s game against Pittsburgh State on Sept. 20 at Wilkins Stadium.

There may have been no run-rule, but the Wichita State Softball Program proved on the scoreboard how powerful their hitting can be. 

The Shockers beat Pittsburg State University 31-3 in their first game of the fall season on Sunday.  In order to allow for more reps and practice from both teams, the fall season consists of 10 inning games with no run-rule. 

The Shockers pulled away from Pittsburg State right away by scoring 16 runs in the first inning. They hit six home runs in total with four of those homers coming in the first inning. 

Senior first baseman Neleigh Herring had three home runs on the day. She hit a three – run shot to start off the scoring for the Shockers. 

“I’m just trying to see the ball and push back the ball,” Herring said. I felt good. “I think my approach was good and I was able to get my timing down. Home runs come if I feel good in the box and I’m not chasing pitches or getting outside of my plan.” 

Sophomore catcher Jessica Garcia also had a notable performance at the plate by hitting a grand slam in the first. 

Each player from the Shockers pitching staff got a chance in the circle. Senior Erin McDonald got the start and pitched 3.0 innings. She struck out five and allowed zero runs and hits. 

The Shockers had much support from the crowd including Wichita State softball alumni. 

“We had a really good showing for the first game,” Herring said. “We pitched well, played really good defense, and we were able to keep our energy up.” 

Transfers Zoe Jones and Arielle James both started off in the lineup for the Shockers with James at second base and Jones at third. Jones had a solo shot in the first. 

“I feel like they (the transferred) fit right in,” Herring said. “They are going to be able to produce for us.”

Up next, the Shockers will play against Southern Nazarene on Friday, Sept. 24 at Wilkins Stadium. TIckets to each fall game are $5 a piece.