Junior center fielder Emily Nagle and senior third baseman Caitlin Baxter are both on pace to finish the softball season with batting averages above .400.
Coming into their latest match-up against first place Gannon University on Monday, Nagle was leading the PSAC in batting average at .457, while scoring 14 runs and stealing four bases. Baxter wasn’t far behind Nagle coming into Monday, being ranked eighth in the PSAC in batting average at .411, along with her team-leading three home runs with 11 RBIs.
“It was actually pretty neat,” Nagle said regarding leading the PSAC in batting average. “I worked hard over the winter and I currently still work really hard, so it’s cool to have that opportunity to lead the PSAC.”
Nagle, a Bellwood, Pa. native, started all 43 games last season at center field and ended the season with a .312 batting average, with 11 multi-hit games, scored 22 runs with 12 RBIs. After going one-for-three and one-for-four in The Rock’s doubleheader against Gannon, her season batting average currently sits at .443, and currently riding a 14-game hit streak heading into this weekend’s match-ups. She has also notched six doubles, a triple and eight RBIs.
“I’m trying not to let it get to my head,” Nagle said. “I think I need to at least get a hit a game just to help the momentum of our team, and if I have multiple hits that’s great, but I just wanna keep it up to help my team win.”
Baxter is from Butler, Pa. and she started 41 of 42 games last season, batting .260, with nine multi-hit games, scoring 17 runs and setting a career-high 23 RBIs which was third on the team. Facing some tough pitching against first-place Gannon, Baxter went 0-7 on the day, bringing her batting average down to .375, still second on the team to Nagle. Her three home runs still lead the team with four doubles and a triple.
“I’m not really into stats,” Baxter said. “They change every game, but it’s a good accomplishment for both me and Nagle to be leading the PSAC, but stats change all the time.”
Nagle currently sits at no. 4 on the PSAC batting average list, while Baxter sits at no. 19 heading into this weekend. Baxter mentioned consistency is one of the hardest things about the game.
“Games change and the people we play always changes,” Baxter said. “You can go three-for-three one day, then the next day you can go zero-and- three.”
The Rock currently sits at fifth in the PSAC West with a 9-16 record, with Gannon in first place with a 20-7 record. The Green and White are only five wins behind second place California University (Pa.) who sit with a 14-10 record. The Rock will travel to Edinboro University on Friday for a double-header starting at 2:30, then will come home to face California (Pa.) on Saturday starting at 1 p.m.