Kaiserslautern making noise on diamond
The Kaiserslautern Raiders kept pace in an intensely competitive Division I softball race with four impressive wins over the weekend.
The Raiders opened the homestand Friday against overmatched Division II opponent Ansbach and handed the Cougars 21-1 and 30-2 defeats.
Hannah Philpot, Tori Liggins and Allie Alamos hit home runs in the first win; Victoria Jackson drove in five runs and Tia Hall plated four in the second game.
Saturday brought a set against Division I rival Lakenheath, and with it a more formidable challenge. The Raiders scored five runs over the fourth and fifth innings in a 10-5 opening win and completed the sweep with a 16-1 rout.
Liggins picked up both pitching wins for the Raiders, collecting 13 combined strikeouts. Standouts among a litany of productive Kaiserslautern batters included Phoenix Whisennand with a key first-game home run and Emma Frost with five RBI in the nightcap.
Morgan Goll led the Lancers' efforts at the plate with two hits, including a double, a run scored and two RBI in the opener; she also drove in Lakenheath's lone run in game two.
Vilseck 15/11, Hohenfels 0/1: Saturday at Hohenfels, the Falcons swooped in for a pair of double-digit wins.
Elana Montanez struck out eight Tiger hitters in a four-inning shutout to open the doubleheader. Vilseck piled on six runs in the first inning of the nightcap and five more in the second inning to claim the sweep.
Vicenza 10/12, Aviano 0/11: Saturday at Aviano, Megan Buffington threw a perfect game in the opener and the Cougars outgunned a resurgent Saint offense to earn a sweep.
The wins pushed Vicenza's win streak to six games after a 1-3 swoon the weekend of April 17. The games quelled Aviano's momentum, snapping a four-game win streak that included the program's first-ever wins over Naples.
Patch 15/21, SHAPE 0/1: Saturday at Stuttgart, the defending champion Panthers earned their first Division I sweep of the season.
Tenley Getschman hit a grand-slam home run and Elizabeth Hansen pitched a shutout in the opener. Mackenzie Coleman struck out 12 in a five-inning two-hitter and Jinhee Oh slapped three doubles in the late game.
The reigning but rebuilding Panthers split doubleheaders with Division I rivals Kaiserslautern and Vilseck earlier in the season. They'll visit Ramstein next weekend in a rematch of last year's Division I title game.