by Kirstin Anderson
Avery Slancik's record-setting pitching helped the Hope College softball team secure a doubleheader sweep at Albion College on Tuesday.
The 4-1 victory that was followed a 4-3 victory in Game 2 elevated the Flying Dutch to their sixth consecutive 20-win season under head coach Mary VandeHoef.
Slancik, pictured, recorded two saves against Albion to give her a school-record five on the season. The freshman from Scotts, Michigan (Vicksburg) passed Kelsey Guisbert's four from 2006.
Hope (20-8 overall) is in second place in the MIAA standings with a 7-3 league record.
In Game 1, designated player Shay Pinhey of Ann Arbor, Michigan (Pioneer HS) led the Flying Dutch offense by going 3-for-4. The senior from Ann Arbor, Michigan (Pioneer) put the Flying Dutch on the board in the first inning when she scored on a RBI single by shortstop Savannah Dixon of Niles, Michigan (Edwardsburg).
Albion took a 2-1 lead in its half of the inning with two unearned runs, but Pinhey tied the score with a single to center in the second that knocked in pinch-runner Jordyn Diaz of Naperville, Illinois (Neuqua Valley).
Pinhey nabbed a go-ahead RBI single in the fourth that brought in left fielder Noelle Jackson of Grand Blanc, Michigan (Grand Blanc).
Hope added an unearned run in the fifth. Dixon scored when Albion mishandled a sacrifice bunt attempt by catcher Morgann Kanouse of Cadillac, Michigan (Cadillac).
Winning pitcher Chloe Haskins of Brighton, Michigan (Brighton) scattered three hits and one walk over 5 1/3 innings of work. She struck out three.
Slancik earned her fourth save by firing 1 ⅔ innings of scoreless relief.
In Game 2, the Britons jumped out to an early 1-0 lead in the top of the second, but center fielder Jo Cook of Birch Run, Michigan (Birch Run) answered in the bottom of the inning with an RBI single that sent Kanouse home.
Jordyn Diaz's 2-RBI double continued the rally for Hope. Cook and pinch-runner in the bottom of the second, however, that truly secured the momentum for Hope. Her left-field swing sent Cook and Breana Nolan of Metamora, Michigan (Lapeer).
Arinn King's RBI single in the bottom of the fifth inning added an insurance run.
Reliever Janelle Baar of Byron Center, Michigan (Byron Center) tossed two scoreless innings for the win.
Slancik tossed 1 ⅔ scoreless innings for the save..
The Flying Dutch will return to action this Wednesday at 3 pm at Wolters Stadium, where they will face off against MIAA leader Trine University.