PREVIEW: Softball travels to Purdue Fort Wayne

Softball+takes+on+Purdue+Fort+Wayne.+Photo+Credit%3A+Colby+Sherwin

Softball takes on Purdue Fort Wayne. Photo Credit: Colby Sherwin

By Austin Bechtold, Contributor

FORT WAYNE, Ind.– This weekend, Robert Morris softball will take on their fellow Horizon League newcomers in Purdue Fort Wayne this weekend in Indiana. The Colonials (13-9, 8-6) will face the Mastodons (4-12, 3-9) for back-to-back doubleheaders beginning Friday at 1 p.m. and game two at 3 p.m., while Saturday begins at noon with the final game of the weekend planned for 2 p.m.

Recapping Robert Morris

Riding a three-game losing streak, the Colonials take on Purdue Fort Wayne after taking three of four from Oakland at the North Athletic Complex. Dropping the first game 10-1 in six innings, RMU responded in a major way with a 4-3 win in game two. Saturday was all Colonials with 3-2 and 4-0 victories to take down the Mastodons.

Robert Morris has done a nice job transitioning from the NEC to the Horizon League, with a strong showing over the past two series-winning five of their last six. RMU is already making its mark in the conference and should continue to thrive down the stretch.

Scouting Purdue Fort Wayne

The Mastodons have struggled this year to find any consistent play as their pitching has not been strong this year. Currently sitting at 3-9 in the Horizon League, PFW has not gotten off to the season they would have hoped, and now have to face a hot Colonials team that is showing no signs of slowing down. The team lost three of four to Youngstown State last time out, only winning the final game 11-6. Before the YSU series, the Mastodons had their matchup with Oakland canceled. The program needs to try to find a spark to jolt themselves into the rest of the year with some momentum going forward.

Players to Watch

Charlotte Grover (RMU) – Grover has been a breakout player as a freshman for the Colonials. Her three home runs are only behind Natalie Higgins and Madison Riggle for the team lead, and she has also driven in ten runs. She will be a player to watch this series and her entire college career.

Madison Riggle (RMU) – Riggle’s 2021 season has been a good one of late, with wins over Cleveland State and Oakland in her last two outings, five and seven innings, respectively. She should continue to pitch well this weekend and lead the Colonials to victory.

Kyndell Ethridge (IPFW) – The senior infielder leads the team with a .353 average and 1.036 OPS. Her 22 total bases are second on the team and had 12 hits in 34 at-bats this season.

Meagan Mullaney (IPFW) – Mullaney leads the Mastodons with four home runs and 11 RBI. Her .533 slugging percentage is second behind Ethridge, and the pop in her bat needs to show for Purdue Fort Wayne to come out with a victory.

Prediction

I think Robert Morris, despite being on the road, will come away with three wins in the series. They will greatly appreciate the hard-working players on the team like Higgins, Riggle, and Grover and depend on them moving forward the rest of the season, winning games one, three, and four this weekend.