Darbe Walks Off Crowder Twice, Grizzlies Sweep Roughriders

Freshman utility player Alivia Darbe had two walk-off hits for the Grizzlies in a doubleheader sweep of Crowder College
Freshman utility player Alivia Darbe had two walk-off hits for the Grizzlies in a doubleheader sweep of Crowder College

EL DORADO, Kan. – Walk-off hits are rare, but two in one day? Unthinkable.

Butler freshman Alivia Darbe did just that though. The utility player out of Olathe lifted the No. 17 Grizzlies to two walk-off wins over Crowder College on Thursday with two swings of the bat.

Butler swept the Roughriders, winning 2-1 in game one and 12-11 in game two. They finish the season 3-1 vs. Crowder after splitting a pair in Neosho earlier this season.

The Grizzlies return to action on Wednesday, traveling to Great Bend for two games against the Barton Cougars.

Game 1: Butler 2, Crowder 1 (9 inn.)

Game one was a low scoring affair. The Grizzlies were outhit 10-4 but Butler starting pitcher Cheyenne Handsaker (W, 11-2) was able to scatter the 10 hits, only allowing one run in the game as she struck out 10 and walked none.

Crowder scored its lone run of the game in the first inning on an RBI double from Arene Landon-Lane.

It appeared as if Butler would go down in a pitcher's duel as they entered the seventh inning trailing 1-0, but JaKeyla McDaniel had other things in mind. The sophomore outfielder tied the game 1-1 with one out as she smacked an RBI double to left center that scored Darbe.

The teams traded scoreless half innings in the eighth and Handsaker struck out two in the ninth to send the Grizzlies back up. Darbe led off the bottom of the ninth and hit a solo home run to center field, securing the win for Butler. The home run was Darbe's fifth of the season.

McDaniel led Butler with two hits, also walking twice. Darbe scored both of Butler's runs.

Crowder's Jensyn Elder (L, 13-4) pitched all 8.0 innings for the Roughriders, allowing the two runs on four hits. She struck out 10 and walked five. Lydia Feiste led Crowder with three hits while Landon-Lane also had three hits.

Game 2: Butler 12, Crowder 11 (9 inn.)

Game two was the complete opposite from game one with the teams combining for 23 runs and 24 hits.

Butler held a 9-6 advantage heading into the fifth inning before Crowder erupted for five runs, taking an 11-9 lead. It was the last time the Roughriders would score though as Addy Ewing held them scoreless over the next two innings.

Madison Nightingale tied the game up in the bottom of the fifth with an RBI double to center field that scored Kory Schoenfeld and Nightingale later scored on a passed ball to make it 11-11.

The Grizzlies made two errors in the seventh inning but were able to escape unscathed.

In the bottom of the seventh, Claire Lopez singled to left field to lead things off and Chloe Cardona followed it up with a single to left. Darbe then stepped up and singled through the right side to score Lopez and walk-off the Roughriders for the second time in two games.

Cardona had a team-high three hits and Darbe drove in a team-high three RBI. Lopez, Nightingale and McDaniel all had two hits.

Ewing picked up the win in the circle (W, 6-0) tossing 5.2 innings in relief of Chloe Odle. Ewing allowed six runs on nine hits, striking out three and walking one. Crowder's Aubree Saporito (L, 7-6) was hit with the loss, throwing 4.2 innings in relief allowing five runs and striking out four.

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