Payton Long Wins Twice As Prairie Stars Sweep McKendree


Payton Long won both games on Saturday as the University of Illinois Springfield softball team swept McKendree in a doubleheader at LOLJOS. The Prairie Stars won by scores of 2-0 and 8-3.

In game one, Long threw a one-hit shutout. She struck out 11 batters and walked just three. In the first, she walked the second batter and that runner advanced to second on a groundout before being stranded. Long did not allow a runner to reach second base the rest of the game. The only hit was a two-out single to center field in the fourth inning.

UIS got on the board in the fourth with an unearned run when Bree Derhake scored on a wild pitch. The Prairie Stars gave Long some insurance in the sixth when Derhake scored again on a single by Hannah Kain.

Long threw just 93 pitches in the first game, allowing her to come in relief in game two. She threw the final four innings and allowed just three hits and one run. She struck out four more hitters. She came in relief for the starter, Addison Bryant, who allowed two runs through the first three innings.

The Prairie Stars offense gave its pitchers plenty of support in the second game as it had 11 hits. UIS scored two times in both of the first two innings, and then added four more in the fourth.

Natalie Cokel had four RBI and two hits to lead the offense. Calla Wickenhauser had two hits and two RBI. Derhake, Morgan Edwards, and Hunter Niebrugge each scored twice.

UIS improves to 15-13 overall and 4-2 in GLVC play. The Prairie Stars return home next weekend for GLVC series on Saturday and Sunday against Missouri-St. Louis and Maryville.