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Washburn's Hadley Kerschen turns a double play against Central Oklahoma

[Photograph by Rex Wolf]

Shawnee Height's #11 Lily Martin shoots for a goal against the Lansing Lady Lions

[Photograph by Rex Wolf]

Seaman's Tauren Walz competes during the Topeka West Girls Invite April 14th, 2021

[Photograph by Rex Wolf]

Seaman's Taylin Hallbaumer comes in at the top spot in her heat March 25, 2021

[Photograph by Rex Wolf]

Washburn's Jenna Moore fields a ball and fires to first base as WU takes on Fort Hays State

[Photograph by Rex Wolf]

Washburn hosts the Northeastern River Hawks March 20, 2021

[Photograph by Rex Wolf]

The WU women return to Lee Arena to take on NorthWest Missouri State Bearcats

[Photograph by Rex Wolf]

Washburn takes on the Northeastern River Hawks March 20, 2021

[Photograph by Rex Wolf]

Washburn takes on the Northeastern River Hawks March 20, 2021

[Photograph by Rex Wolf]

Washburn takes on the Northeastern River Hawks March 20, 2021

[Photograph by Rex Wolf]

The WU Women return to Lee Arena to take on NorthWest Missouri State Bearcats

[Photograph by Rex Wolf]

The WU women return to Lee Arena to take on NorthWest Missouri State Bearcats

[Photograph by Rex Wolf]

Washburn Rural's Nathan Trachta competes in the mens 100 yard Butterfly at the Topeka City Boys Championship

[Photograph by Rex Wolf]

Trail product Mead off to blistering start for Washburn softball

Rick Peterson

MarritMeadfieldingSanta Fe Trail product Marrit Mead is hitting .484 for Washburn after a big day in Sunday's doubleheader sweep over Newman. [Photo by Rex Wolf/TSN]

By RICK PETERSON

TopSports.news

A year ago at this time, Marrit Mead was a senior at Santa Fe Trail waiting for her chance to play softball after her final high school season was wiped out by COVID-19.

Washburn University has given Mead that opportunity from Day 1 and the third baseman has responded with a monster freshman season for the Ichabods, who took a 21-6 record into Monday's home MIAA twinbill against Lincoln.

Mead, who had a team-high .484 batting average through Sunday, said that it was difficult having her senior season canceled, but said she had to concentrate on her future at Washburn.

“It definitely took some time to adjust because it was sad at first, but then you look at all the things coming forward and you can’t be sad anymore and you just have to move on,'' Mead said Sunday after going 5 for 7 with a double and two home runs in WU's doubleheader sweep over Newman.

Mead admitted she was surprised when veteran Washburn coach Brenda Holaday inserted her into the Ichabods' lineup for the season-opener in early February, but she has delivered ever since, leading WU in most offensive categories.

“It was a shock at first, but as soon as I was given my opportunity, I knew I had to take it and run with it and do the best I could for my team,'' Mead said. “It’s not something I was expecting, but every day everyone works hard at practice and everyone makes each other better.

"Each and every day the lineup could be different because everyone is good enough to play on the field.’’

MarritMeadWUFreshman third baseman Marrit Mead leads Washburn in most offensive categories while starting every game for the Ichabods, 21-6 through Sunday. [Photo courtesy of Washburn Athletics]

After missing two straight weekend series due to COVID protocols, Mead and her Ichabod teammates showed some rustiness in Saturday's twinbill loss to nationally-ranked Central Oklahoma. But after going 0 for 4 in the first game against the Bronchos, Mead, WU's leadoff hitter, had a pair of hits in the second game to get back on track before raising her average 18 points on Sunday.

“I was trying do stuff that wasn’t myself, but I got back in my groove and now I’m back,'' Mead said.

Mead said that Sunday's sweep against Newman was good for the Ichabod team as a whole.

“I think it was good just to stay fresh in our minds that we do have something to work for and no team’s going to just roll over and die for us,'' she said. "We have to keep working each and every game.’’

Mead said the fact that she gets the opportunity to play her college softball right down the road from her home in Overbook is an added bonus.

“I can go home whenever I want and some girls can’t, but each day here it feels like home.’’ 

 

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Ichabod baseball clinches series win over Rogers State with split

Rick Peterson

By RICK PETERSON

TopSports.news

Washburn University's baseball team clinched its second straight MIAA series win with an 11-4 first-game victory over Rogers State Sunday at Falley Field, but the Hillcats avoided a weekend sweep with a 10-8 win in the second game.

Washburn, now 12-18 overall and 11-13 in the MIAA, got big days at the plate from Tyler Clark-Chiapparelli, Zion Bowlin and Brett Ingram while pitcher Brock Gilliam continued his strong season for the Ichabods in the opener, improving to 5-2.

Tyler Clark ChiapparelliWashburn's Tyler Clark-Chiapparelli homered in both games as the Ichabods clinched a series win over Rogers State in a doublheader sweep on Sunday. [File photo/TSN]

Clark-Chiapparelli went 3 for 4 in the opener with a home run, two runs batted, a stolen base and three runs scored, while Ingram also went  3 for 4 and drove in three runs and scored once. Xavier De Leon and Bowlin both had two hits and scored twice in the win.

After giving up two runs in the first inning, Gilliam settled in and pitched six solid innings, allowing three runs on five hits and issuing four walks while striking out seven.

BrockGilliamactionWashburn pitcher Brock Gilliam improved to 5-2 in Sunday's 11-4 MIAA first-game win over Rogers State. [File photo/TSN]

The second game included three lead changes and two tie scores. 

Clark-Chiapparelli continued his hot hitting in the second game, going 3 for 3 at the plate with a three-run homer, a run-scoring double and four RBI.while Bowlin went 3 for 4 with a homer and three RBI and scored twice and Ingram was 3 for 5 and scored three runs against the Hillcats (13-15, 10-14).

ZionBowlinWashburn third baseman Zion Bowlin had a double, triple and a home run in Sunday's doubleheader against Rogers State. [File photo/TSN]
 
Washburn will go on the road to take on Fort Hays State Friday and Saturday.

FIRST GAME

WASHBURN 11, ROGERS STATE 4

Rogers State 200 010 001 -- 4 7 0

Washburn 015 012 20x -- 11 13 1

Gilliam, Huggins (7), Sharp (9) and Bay, Jones. Ewig, Marinac (5), Woodard (6), Craig (7) and Soto. W -- Gilliam (6-2). L -- Ewig (1-1). 2B -- Washburn: DeLeon. 3B -- Washburn: Bowlin, Sader. HR -- Washburn: Clark-Chiapparelli.

SECOND GAME

ROGERS STATE 10, WASHBURN 8

Rogers State (13-15, 10-14) 030 220 120 -- 10 15 2

Washburn (12-18, 11-13) 104 300 000 -- 8 12 1

Murphy, Dickey (4), Edwards (5), Riggio (7) and Soto. McElwee, Bennett (5), Casillas (6), Philbin (7), Marrell (8), Steward (9) and Bay. W -- Riggio (1-0). L -- Marrell (0-1). 2B -- Rogers State: Harvey, Horn. Washburn: Bowlin, Clark-Chiapparelli. 3B -- Rogers State: Horn. HR -- Rogers State: Soto, Merriweather. Washburn: Bowlin, Clark-Chiapparelli.