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Heather Tracy breaks hits record in MSU Billings split

Posted at 4:51 PM, Feb 17, 2018
and last updated 2018-07-05 16:48:44-04

(MSU Billings release)

DENVER, Colo. – Playing a pair of games in Denver on Saturday, the Montana State University Billings Yellowjackets (8-6) split two games against Metropolitan State University Denver (3-9). MSUB dropped the first game of the day 5-3 before earning a 6-3 win in Game Two.

Heather Tracy collected her MSUB-record breaking 216th career hit in the fifth-inning of the first game against Metro State. Tracy turned on the first-pitch of her at-bat to send the ball over the right-field fence as she broke Bella Rovens’ record of 215 career knocks with two hits in the first game of the doubleheader. She finished the day with five hits over two games but had her 10-game run scored streaked snapped in the second game of the day.

Earlier this season Tracy became the third player in MSUB history to collect 200 career hits behind Rovens and Terina Stacks. Rovens set the record last season as a teammate of Tracy’s. The MSUB right fielder now hold the record for hits, batting average and stolen bases in a career. Tracy is hitting .585 so far this season and has scored 21 runs over 14 games and leads the team with four home runs this season.

Megan Dettling had hits in both games today and is now on a four-game hit streak while hitting .426 this season. She also appeared in the circle during both of today’s contests as she went the distance in the 5-3 loss and earned a save in the 6-3 win.

Kelsee Bushell started at third base and shortstop on Saturday while collecting RBI’s in each game. She recorded her first home run as a Yellowjacket in Game Two as she brought home freshman Allie Hughes on a blast to left field. Hughes scored in both games and went 2-for-6 at the dish.

Maddy Lincoln was flawless for six full innings before giving up a three-run home run in the seventh in the second game. The left now has five wins this season and a 2.93 ERA.

GAME ONE: Metro State University Denver 5, MSU Billings 3

Megan Dettling (2-1, 4.28 ERA) had a strong start for the Yellowjackets in Game One on Saturday as the senior pitched all six inning and allowed just three earned runs in the 5-3 loss. Three MSUB errors led to a pair of unearned scores in the loss, giving Metro enough to earn the first win of the day with just six hits. Darby McGhee (2-4, 5.10 ERA) was excellent in the circle for MSUD striking out six batters over seven innings while collecting the win.

The Roadrunners opened the scoring in the bottom of the first inning with a two-run home run by Kristyn Peters that brought home Ashlee Kim who reached on an error to lead off the inning. Dettling record all three outs via infield pop ups in the inning.

The MSUB offense got things started with the No. 9 hitter in the order when Allie Hughes legged-out three bases on a deep fly ball to left field that was lost in the sun a scored an error on the warning track. Amanda Barham drove Hughes in with a single to the right side of the infield to cut the lead to one and score the ‘Jackets first run in the third inning. Tracy collected her record tying 215th career hit with a single up the middle in the inning.

In the bottom of the third an RBI double off of the bat of McGhee plated the third run of the game for the Roadrunners building a 3-1 lead for MSUD. After a single, Dettling settled in and retired the final two batter of the inning without incident to strand runners on second and third.

Both teams would score again in the fourth. Bushell delivered a single to shallow left field that scored Myrissa Prince who started the inning with a single. After a Hughes walk, McGhee stranded two MSUB runners to end the inning with a groundout.

Capitalizing on a two hits and an MSUB error the Roadrunners picked up two more runs in the bottom of the frame to give them a 5-2 lead after four innings of play. After a quick out to start the inning, MSUD’s Alyssa Richter doubled to center and scored on a single by Tes Hass. Hass advance to second on the throw home as Richter scored and was plated by an MSUB-error on a ground ball.

Leading off the fifth, Tracy had her second hit of the ballgame as she hit a solo home run over the right-field wall making the score 5-3. The hit broke the MSUB record for career hits and was the 216th knock of the seniors’ career.

The sixth inning provided the ‘Jackets an opportunity to narrow the gap after Hughes started the top of the frame with a walk. Following two quick outs, a single from Detting and a Brittanee Fisher hit-by-pitch the bases were filled with ‘Jackets but a Cameron Cassinelli ground out ended the threat.

Tracy finished the game 2-for-4 with an RBI. Barham and Bushell each collected an RBI in the game on one hit. Eight MSUB batters recorded a hit in the game compared to just six hitters for the Roadrunners.

GAME TWO: MSU Billings 6, Metro State University Denver 3

The Yellowjackets were in control from the outset of the second game as Maddy Lincoln (5-3, 2.93 ERA) showed great command in the circle. The left-handed pitcher retired the order in the second inning on three pitches and started the bottom of the third with another one-pitch out. Metro State recorded their first hit of the game against Lincoln in the bottom of the third.

Tracy was the only player to reach base in the first two innings of the game after a single in the first. She advanced to second with her 10th stolen base of the season but was unable to advance further as Metro’s pitcher Destinee Lopez () worked through the lineup.

Bushell was hit by a pitch to ignite a rally for the ‘Jackets in the third inning. The third baseman was moved to second by a Barham walk and a Dettling single filled the bases for MSUB. Fisher struck a two-RBI single to left field giving the Yellowjackets a 2-0 lead.

Three more runs crossed the plate for the Yellowjackets in the fourth powered by a two-run shot from Bushell. Hughes started the inning by legging out an infield single and was brought home on the Bushell bomb. Barham would score the third run of the frame after reaching on a single. An RBI double from Tracy brought the speedy Barham in to score but a throw behind Tracy at second base would end the inning with the MSUB runner being called out on a close play getting back to the bag.

An uneventful fifth inning followed with each team collecting a hit a piece. In the sixth, catcher Shayla Felix gave the ‘Jackets a 6-0 lead with a solo shot over the left field fence. Felix nearly hit a home run earlier in the game on a fly out to the left-center field warning track in the fourth.

The ‘Jackets had runners on second and third with no outs in the top of the seventh but couldn’t bring another run across the plate.

A rally from the Roadrunners in the bottom of the second plated three runs on a Sarena Espinoza three-run home run with one out. Lincoln was relieved by Dettling who picked up her second career save after giving up a single.

Tomorrow the Yellowjackets will be in Boulder, Colo. for a pair of games against Colorado School of Mines (4-6). The Orediggers have played a pair of GNAC opponents already this season after earning a 1-2 win over Northwest Nazarene and a 17-6 loss to Wester Washington. They last played last Sunday against No. 9 Dixie State where they took a 10-9 loss in nine-innings against the Trailblazers.