EDWARDSVILLE, Ill. – After more than a four-hour rain delay Friday, SIUE softball's pitching was fantastic with a pair of shutouts over Austin Peay.
SIUE regained second place in the Ohio Valley Conference with an 8-0 win in five innings and a 1-0 victory in the nightcap.
"I was happy with both of the wins, and we're pitching pretty well right now," said SIUE Head Coach Sandy Montgomery.
Senior left-hander Haley Chambers-Book tossed a two-hit shutout in the opener for her 23rd victory of the season. Freshman right-hander Emily Ingles took a no-hitter into the seventh before finishing off the Governors on a one-hitter.
It was SIUE's 14th and 15th shutout of the season. The Cougars pitching staff lowered its team earned run average to 1.78.
SIUE's offense came out hard after the rain delay, scoring three runs in the first inning off Austin Peay starter Kelsey Gross.
"The kids came out swinging the bats early, and Haley threw a great game," said Montgomery.
Alyssa Heren opened the game by drawing a walk on four pitches. Chambers-Book immediately put the Cougars up 1-0 on a double that tailed away from the Governors' center fielder in the left-center field gap. Reagan Curtis added a single to left field that moved Chambers-Book over to third. Allison Smiley picked up an RBI on a sacrifice fly, and Kalei Kaneshiro added her own RBI on a single to left field that scored Curtis, who stole her base of the season to get into scoring position.
The lead expanded to seven in the third inning on a two-RBI single by Heren and another RBI hit by Chambers-Book.
"I just went up to the plate trying to keep it simple and do what you have to do to get the job done," said Chambers-Book.
The Cougars won in walk-off fashion in the bottom of the fifth. Eby reached on a fielder's choice and then rounded the bases on Heren's double to right field.
SIUE had 12 hits total, including at least one from every starter. Heren, Chambers-Book and Amy Hunt had two hits each.
Chambers-Book struck out nine in the win.
In game two, SIUE's offense collected seven hits but just one run.
In the third inning, Eby singled up the middle and was replaced at first by pinch runner Jane Smith. On the first pitch to Heren, Smith stole second. Smith moved to third base on an infield grounder to second base. Chambers-Book provided her second game-winning hit of the day with a double to left field.
Ingles was dominant in the circle with 10 strikeouts. The only hit she allowed was a blooper to right field by Christiana Gable with one out in the seventh.
"It was a tough day all around with the weather," said Montgomery. "I appreciate everyone who came out and stuck with us."
SIUE returns to the diamond Sunday for a 1 p.m. doubleheader against Murray State. It will be Senior Day as the Cougars recognize Chambers-Book, Page Clinton, Amy Hunt, Whitney Lanphier, Sarah Lopesilvero and Allison Smiley.