Ginter flirts with perfection as Ichabods softball extends winning streak

Go for it: Sophomore right-fielder Maddie Stipsits races to first base to try to beat out a ground ball.

Coming off an undefeated weekend against Pittsburg State University, the Washburn University Softball team was red hot with a 16-3 record. Ahead of them was an afternoon doubleheader against Fort Hays State University who struggled out of the gate to an 8-10 start. If the Ichabods could continue their winning ways with a perfect afternoon it would give the team a ten-game winning streak.

The first inning was a strong one for freshman Jaycee Ginter who threw a scoreless top half of the inning and drove in freshman third baseman Marrit Mead with a double after Mead led off the inning with a single.

Ginter continued her strong start pitching, going right at Fort Hays State hitters, and they were struggling to get the ball past Washburn’s fielders. Though four innings she had not surrendered a hit and had only allowed one runner to reach base.

The Ichabods were able to expand on their lead in the bottom of the fourth inning to give Ginter some breathing room. Sophomore center fielder Maddie Stipsits got the inning started with a single before going to second base on a throwing error. Freshman first baseman Kimi Patterson followed that up with a bunt single down the third-base line before stealing second base. Finally, a sacrifice fly off the bat of Mead was all it took to make it a 2-0 game.

Going into the sixth inning Ginter was still working on a no-hitter, not letting the Tigers make solid contact on anything. The defense behind her also continued to make plays, including Maddie Stipsits who made a diving catch just inside the right-field foul line with one out in the inning.

“I was excited, but I don’t think I did anything that special, I think my team was there backing me up, they made a lot of defensive plays that helped me,” said Ginter.

Washburn threatened to score in the bottom half of the inning, collecting two more hits but were unable to do so as the game headed into the seventh.

In the bottom of the inning, Fort Hays State went down in order as they had in all but one inning prior, completed by a fly ball that was collected by freshman second baseman Autymn Schreiner. With that out, Jaycee Ginter would have her first career collegiate no-hitter as only a freshman, and it was the first for Washburn since February of 2011.

“The improvement that she had made from our first weekend in Lubbock until now is fantastic and she is on a steady climb, both on the mound and at the plate,” said Washburn Head Coach Brenda Holaday. “She is there for a reason, she handles pressure and stress well and she likes the big-time moments.”

The win improved the Ichabod’s record to 17-3 on the season but they would not have time to celebrate as the second game of the afternoon would begin shortly after.

Edited by: Crystal Hendrix, Katrina Johnson, Matthew L. Self