Foresters Fall to Kalamazoo, Defeat North Park

Photo by Sydney Gardner
Photo by Sydney Gardner

Sophomore outfielder Abby King's second home run of the season helped the Lake Forest College softball team defeat North Park University 8-4 on Thursday. The Foresters had suffered a 5-4 loss to Kalamazoo College earlier in the day.

King's two-run shot over the centerfield fence capped off the Foresters' four-run first inning. After the Vikings scored a run in the top of the frame, Lake Forest sophomore centerfielder Maria Zepeda led off the home half with a bunt single and advanced to third when freshman first baseman Riley Frisbie reached on an error. Frisbie stole second and an errant throw from the catcher allowed Zepeda to score. Frisbie eventually came home on a wild pitch and sophomore second baseman Alyssa Grimm, who reached on an error, scored in front of King on the home run.

Both teams added a run in the second, the Foresters on freshman third baseman Haylee Sherlund's first career homer.

After a scoreless third inning, Lake Forest added to its lead with two in the fourth on the first collegiate homer by Frisbie, who finished with three hits in the contest.

Sophomore outfielder Emma Carlson then made the score 8-3 in the fifth when she stole second and scored on a base hit by freshman catcher Sydney Wyatt.

North Park plated one more run in the top of the seventh but Lake Forest freshman pitcher Missy Dieckman-Meyer was able to complete the game and improve to 2-2 on the season. She struck out five batters, walked a pair, and allowed just two earned runs in the contest.

The victory ended a four-game losing streak for the Foresters, who have not dropped five consecutive contests since 2001.

Lake Forest's first game of the day was a back-and-forth affair and the team's second straight walkoff loss. Zepeda gave the Foresters the early lead when she led off the opening inning with the first of three singles in the game. She advanced all the way to third base on an error by the leftfielder and scored on a base hit by Frisbie.

After the Hornets tied the score in the bottom of the second, Zepeda struck again in the third, singling again and eventually coming home on a ground ball off the bat of junior shortstop Kat Beall.

Kalamazoo scored twice in the bottom of the third to take the lead for the first time in the game. 

The Foresters tied the game at three on a sacrifice fly by King in the fifth and regained the lead when Wyatt, who walked and stole a base in the sixth, game home on a Hornet error.

After a leadoff single by Kalamazoo in the bottom of the seventh, neither a sacrifice bunt nor a fielder's choice ground ball resulted in an out and the ensuing bases-loaded single up the middle brought home the tying and winning runs.

Lake Forest is now 3-5 on the year. The game against Kalamazoo was the Hornet's season opener and North Park fell to 0-8.

The Foresters will continue play at The Spring Games in Leesburg, Florida, against the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh at 10:30 (EST) Friday morning and Hope College at 3:30 p.m. (EST)