A nine run first inning was more than enough to power the Goshen College Softball team to a victory on Sunday in the day’s first of two games.

The Maple Leafs traveled to Columbia, Missouri over the weekend to play the Stars of Stephens College. Goshen dominated the opening game of Sunday’s doubleheader by a score of 12-3, but Stephens bounced back to edge the Leafs 5-4 in the second game.

Goshen got the day off to a fast start putting up eleven runs over the first two innings of play before tacking on an extra insurance run in the third. Stephens stopped the impressive 11-0 run in the bottom of the second inning with three runs of their own, but by that point Goshen was firmly in control.

Offensively Goshen was led by Brooke Maes, sophomore, who collected a team high three RBIs (runs batted in). A trio of Leafs, Rae Ann Miller, first year, Brianna Sherman, first year, and Abby Flickner, senior, each contributed two RBIs of their own. Sam Langley, senior, and McKinzi Vega, first year, also added an RBI apiece. Miller also turned in a solid start on the mound for the Maple Leafs, going the full five innings and allowing seven hits while striking out three. The Stars did themselves no favors by committing three errors in the route.

In game two Goshen again opened the scoring when Miranda Robles, junior, scored in the top of the third. But the in the bottom of the inning the stars finally began to align for Stephens, as the home team scored five runs in the third. Down but not out, the Maple Leafs would chip away at the Stars’ lead throughout the rest of the game, scoring a run in the fifth and two more in the top of the seventh to cut the deficit to 5-4. That was as close as Goshen would come as Stephens managed to hold off the Maple Leafs’ comeback bid and wrap up a slim 5-4 victory to split the doubleheader.

Vega led the Leafs with two RBIs and a home run, with Melissa Munoz, junior, and Taylor Sutliff, first year, adding an RBI each. Miller again pitched for the Maple Leafs, this time in a relief role and kept Goshen in the game until the end, striking out four while allowing no hits over three and a third innings pitched.

The split in the doubleheader puts Goshen’s record at 2-12 for the season. The Maple Leafs are in action again on Tuesday the 15th, when they will open conference play at Bethel College in Mishawaka, Indiana. They will then play at home for the first time on Saturday the 19th, hosting the Cougars of Mount Vernon Nazarene University. First pitch on Saturday is scheduled for 1:00 p.m.