WESTERVILLE, Ohio - - Mount Union's softball team recorded two wins; 5-4 and 4-3 as it swept Otterbein in its Ohio Athletic Conference opener in Westerville, Ohio.
With the two victories, Mount Union improves to 12-3 overall and 2-0 in the OAC, while Otterbein falls to 6-6 overall and 0-2 in the conference.
In the first game, senior Rachel McAninch (West Jefferson/West Jefferson) earned her seventh victory of the season as she pitched a complete game giving up eight hits and striking out seven.
Otterbein took its only lead of the game in the bottom of the first inning when Bryn Allen singled to right field which scored Maggie Zych to give the Cardinals a 1-0 lead.
The Raiders would take a 2-1 lead in the top of the second inning as junior Krista Leighty (Wooster/Triway) hit a two-run home run to left center field.
Mount Union added three more runs in the fourth inning headlined by sophomore Leigh Siedlak (Westerville/Westerville South) who hit her team-leading third home run of the season to give the Raiders a 3-1 lead.
Later in the inning, senior Rachel Jesso (Mount Pleasant, Pa./Mount Pleasant) hit a two-run double to left center field which scored senior Alex Mayo (Greenville/Ansonia) and freshman Tara Spencer (Loveland/Loveland). Mayo and Spencer had reached base as Mayo singled up the middle and Spencer came on as a pinch runner to replace freshman Megan Okuda (Gibsonia, Pa/Pine-Richland).
Otterbein rallied with three runs in the bottom of the seventh inning but Mount Union would go on for the 5-4 victory.
In the second game of the double-header, sophomore Michelle Stiltner (White Lake, Mich./Lakeland) earned her fourth victory of the season for the Raiders as she pitched 6.0 innings and allowed three runs on six hits and struck out four.
The game would remain scoreless until the third inning when the Raiders would score two runs as junior Shelby Carmichael (Dalton/Dalton) singled to right field which drove in Leighty, and Siedlak gave the Raiders a 2-0 lead as she hit a sacrifice fly to right field to score senior Kristen Gromes (Navarre/Fairless)
Otterbein would come right back in the bottom of the third inning with a run of their own as Kayla Woodward led off the inning with a home run to left field to cut the defecit to, 2-1.
Mount Union would increase their lead to 3-1 in the top of the fifth inning as Mayo singled to center field which drove in Carmichael.
The Cardinals tied the game at 3-3 in the bottom of the sixth inning as they would plate two runs as Erin Carpenter and Bryn Allen both drove in runs.
Junior Brittany Papp (Uniontown/Green) drove in what turned out to be the winning run for the Raiders in the seventh inning as she reached first base on an error which scored freshman Lindsay Gerhart (Westerville/Westerville South).
McAninch closed out the game in the top of the seventh inning for her second save of the season and the Raiders would take home the 4-3 victory.
Mount Union returns to action tomorrow for its home opener when it hosts Muskingum in an OAC doubleheader at 1:00 p.m.
Mount Union 4, Otterbein University 3 (Mar 29, 2013 at Westerville, Ohio)