Pratt breaks home run record as MU beats Mercyhurst
Mansfield blasted four home runs on the day, including Kate Pratt's record-setting 24th home run of her career, as the Mountaineers swept Mercyhurst in a PSAC interdivisional doubleheader Saturday afternoon at Helen Lutes Field.
Mansfield won the opener 11-0 and took the nightcap 11-1 to improve to 14-8 on the season.
"I'm pleased with the record," said Pratt, a Troy graduate. "But I'm happier that we won both games by the mercy rule. That's big for us as a team."
In the opener, Mansfield got home runs from freshmen Megan Miller and Ashley Inman along with sophomore Kaitlyn Harris to backup shutout pitching by Caitlin Klobobits and Emily Crandell.
Mansfield scored early and often, plating three runs in the bottom of the first and adding four more in the second on a three-run home run by Megan Miller followed immediately by a solo shot by Inman to take a 7-0 lead.
The Mountaineers added two more runs in the third on a two-run single by Pratt. Mansfield scored its final two runs in the bottom of the fourth inning and ended the game by the eight run rule when junior Kaitlyn Harris hit a liner over the left center field fence.
Caitlin Klobosits went the first four innings to pick up the win and improve to 9-3 on the season. The senior scattered four hits and struck out three while walking one. She extender her scoreless inning streak to 11. Crandell threw a perfect fifth with one strikeout.
Mansfield pounded out 14 hits in the game with Pratt going 3-4 with three RBIs. Miller drove in four runs while Courtney Bauder, Stephanie Simmeth, Danielle Long and Harris each recording two hits.
Megan Hopton took the loss for Mercyhurst.
In the nightcap, Pratt was stellar at the plate and on the mound. The junior went 4-4 from the plate including a three-run walk-off that set the school career home run record while ending the game. She also picked up the win, scattering four hits while striking out four and walking none to improve to 4-5 on the season. She allowed no earned runs.
Mansfield scored the game's first run on an RBI single by Inman in the bottom of the first. Mercyhurst tied the contest with a run in the top of the third before the Mountaineers retook the lead with a pair of runs in the bottom of the inning, scoring on a wild pitch and sac fly by Long.
The score stayed at 3-1 until the bottom of the fifth when Mansfield exploded for eight runs, the final three coming on Pratt's three-run home run over the centerfield fence on a 3-2 count.
"I was looking for something inside on that at-bat, but wasn't getting anything," said Pratt. "So I just decided to go with the pitch and it went out of the park."
Harris also drove in two runs in the inning while Bauder and Amanda Goodwin had RBIs.
In addition to her record-setting home run, Pratt also had a pair of doubles. For the day, Pratt went 7-8 on the afternoon with two doubles, a home run and seven RBIs.
Pratt's ninth home run of the season gave her 24 in her career surpassing former teammate Nicole Yost (2008-2011) who belted 23 home runs. Pratt's nine home runs on the season are one shy of her school record of 10 set last year.
Mansfield improves to 14-8 overall.
The Mountaineers have two key PSAC Central doubleheaders of tap this coming week when they travel to Lock Haven on Tuesday and host Bloomsburg on Saturday.