Gerace’s Grand Slam Leads to Rout of St. Olaf

Mar 6, 2015


ROCHESTER, Minn. – Kelli Gerace’s first grand slam of the year aided a seven-run third inning that allowed the University of Dubuque softball team to run away from St. Olaf in a five-inning affair, 12-1, on Friday afternoon. In the nightcap, the Spartans mustered one hit and two unearned runs in a 7-2 loss to UW-La Crosse.

Game One
The Spartans (2-1) and St. Olaf were tied 1-1 after the first inning, but it quickly evaporated in the third after a lead-off single by Tori Woltz. Five hits later UD sported an 8-1 lead as they blew the game open.

UD followed up their productive third with a four-run fourth inning that featured a home run from the hot-hitting Ainsley Billesbach. Through three games Billesbach is mashing a.750/.778/.1.625 line that includes two home runs and seven RBIs. Billesbach's efforts were part of a 13-hit night that featured 12 RBIs.

On the mound for the Spartans was ace Hannah Koerperich, who kept the Oles (0-3) winless after giving up three hits and one unearned run in 5.0 innings of work. 

Game Two
After cranking out 13 hits against St. Olaf, it was tough sledding vs. UW-La Crosse (3-3) after nabbing just one hit.

Down 3-0 heading into the top of the fourth the Spartans (2-2) loaded the bases. Leadoff hitter, Woltz, reached base on an Eagle error and was subbed out for pinch runner Rebecca Diffenderfer. After loading the bases, Diffenderfer slid into home after a wild pitch to score UD's first run of the game and the sophomore's first run of the season. 

Amanda Williams groundout to second scored Koerperich to conclude the Spartan scoring.

UD's Carlee Grunder snagged UD's lone hit, a double, in 23 at-bats as the Eagles tagged Spartan starter Williams for five earned runs on six hits in a six-inning effort.

The Spartans continue their four-game weekend at Luther’s Rochester Dome Games as they face UW-La Crosse (2-2) at 12:20 p.m. and UW-River Falls (4-1) at 3:00 p.m. on Saturday, March 7.