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ISU Softball on the Rise in March After Slow Start

Written by on March 24, 2023

This story was contributed to by both WZND’s Cason Shingoethe and Liam Lyons.

NORMAL, Ill. – After beginning the season 5-14, the Redbirds softball team has begun to right the ship, winning six out of their last seven contests.

With the redbirds sitting at that dismal 5-14 record after the Owl Classic in Boca Raton Florida, the ‘Birds season looked to be almost over, however since heading to Kentucky, the birds have looked like a brand new ball club.

The Redbirds swept their 4 games in the Murray State Tournament in Murray, Kentucky against MVC opponents Murray State and Youngstown University. 

Excellent pitching was coupled with stellar offense, not scoring less than 5 runs the entire weekend, including a 6-inning run rule victory against Youngstown.

The Redbirds are currently led by Sophomore shortstop Delaney Bryant, who currently ranks 39th in the country in double per game with .36, as well as Senior pitcher Hannah Ross who currently owns a 2.77 ERA, only giving up 3 home runs in her 64 innings pitched this season. The ‘Birds defense as well currently sits just inside the top 40 in the country, making for the redbirds ground ball heavy pitching staff breathe a bit easier.

Currently on the season, the ‘Birds are undefeated at home, that being only one home game played, is currently riding high on the heels of a very successful month of March so far.

The ‘Birds, despite their mediocre record (11-15, 1-1), are currently ranked 6th in the MVC due to their 1-1 record of in-conference matchups, but that could soon improve as they get ready for their first road MVC 3 game series of the season against a struggling Valparaiso team (3-18, 0-2).

The Redbirds hold the all-time series record over Valparaiso 13-2. ISU has won the last 10 games in a row, dating back to 2019. The Beacons hold two wins over the Redbirds, and both came during the 2018 season. 

The Redbirds have also tied for 4th place with Bradley in the Missouri Valley Conference rankings so far this season, who they will go on to play in the next two weeks after returning home to play UIC.