In game one, the Leafs spotted the Cougars three runs heading in to the fourth inning before Goshen pushed across an unearned run to cut the deficit to 3-1. Shortstop Kat Berg, a junior, made it a one-run game with an RBI single. The Leafs trailed 3-2 going to the bottom of the fourth.
In the home half of the fourth, St. Francis pinch hitter Jackie Beilfuss, a sophomore, smacked a grand slam to give the Cougars a 7-3 victory.
Game two needed extra innings to decide a winner, but it started similarly to game one. St. Francis led 5-1 going into the fifth inning, but the Leafs rallied. A leadoff single by right fielder Melissa Hershberger, a sophomore, was followed by a fielding error; a few batters later, Savanah Brinegar, a first-year, whacked a three-run home run to get the Leafs back in the game at 5-4.
An inning later, the Leafs tied the score at five. Center fielder Melanie Meyer, a first-year, led off the inning with a single; she scored the tying run on a single by first baseman Ame Blankenship, a junior. But in the ninth inning, the Cougars (8-10, 2-0) plated the winning run on a Kourtney Holliday double to win the game 6-5. Goshen pitcher Farrah Mitchell, a first-year, logged 8 1/3 innings, striking out ten and walking one.
Hershberger went 4-9 with two RBI on the day; Meyer had two hits, including a double, and scored twice.
Meyer has been the Leafs’ hottest hitter over the past six games, hitting .391, slugging .565 and stealing seven bags. She also hit a walk-off 2-run home run to help the Leafs earn a split against Purdue-North Central over the weekend and was named Springer Design Maple Leaf Athlete of the Week.
The Maple Leafs (7-13, 0-2) began a 10-game, five-day stretch Tuesday; the next eight games are all on the road.