MADEIRA BEACH, Fla. – SIUE softball closed out the EMU Madeira Beach Spring Invitational Sunday with a pair of victories over Loyola and LaSalle.
SIUE improved to 8-3 with a 6-1 win over Loyola and a 7-2 triumph over LaSalle. The Cougars now head to No. 24 Kentucky for a single game Tuesday at 3 p.m. followed by a single game Wednesday at Western Kentucky at 5 p.m.
Emily Ingles improved to 5-1 in the circle with a four-hitter against Loyola. She struck out 11 Loyola batters, one shy of her season high.
"Emily threw really well," said SIUE Head Coach Sandy Montgomery. "She had a few moments in the fifth and the sixth innings, but she battled through it."
SIUE's offense collected 10 hits off Loyola starter Madison Veres and reliever Keenan Dolezal.
"We have a diverse team from a power-speed standopoint," said Montgomery. "That's a positive for us."
In the nightcap, SIUE cranked out 13 hits. It all started with the first of three singles by Alyssa Heren. Zoe Schafer hit her second home run of the week to drive home Heren and give the Cougars a 2-0 lead.
The Cougars scored single tallies in the fourth, fifth and sixth innings.
"We need to dictate our at bats and not let the pitcher dicate the strike zone and how we approach things," said Montgomery.
LaSalle, which had four hits, broke SIUE winner Ashley Koziol's shutout in the seventh inning, scoring twice. Koziol improved to 2-1.