As a freshman, Ashland University pitcher Laney Jones showed glimpses of things to come in the second half of the 2018 season, including a road shutout against nationally-ranked Grand Valley State.
On Tuesday (March 5) in Florida, Jones, now a sophomore, defeated another top regional opponent – the defending NCAA Division II national champion. A complete-game seven-hitter with seven strikeouts, coupled with eight combined runs in the fifth and sixth innings, led the Eagles (6-4) to a 10-3 win on Tuesday over Southern Indiana.
Jones is 2-1 with a save, a 1.84 earned-run average and a team-high 25 strikeouts in 19 innings following Tuesday's victory.
Offensively, the Eagles touched up Screaming Eagles pitching for eight hits, three for extra bases. Junior designated player Dayna Denner was 2-for-3 with a home run and three RBIs, and is hitting .500 in the first 10 games of 2019, while senior first baseman Kylie Asmus was 2-for-4 with a solo homer, Jones was 2-for-4, and sophomore left fielder Emma Lawson drove in two runs.
The big blow in the game was Denner's three-run round-tripper in the fifth, which gave the Eagles a lead at 6-3 they wouldn't relinquish.
Ashland's second game on Tuesday was an 8-3 loss to former conference rival Findlay. Senior right fielder Halle Dorko and sophomore first baseman Abigail Butler each had two hits, and the pitching loss went to senior Hannah Stroe (2-3), who yielded eight hits, six runs and five walks and struck out four in four innings.
Ashland will be back in action in Florida on Thursday (March 7) vs. Gannon at 9:15 a.m. and against Minnesota State-Mankato at 11:30 a.m.