OMAHA, Neb. -- The Bellevue University softball team opened up North Star Athletic Association play on Saturday with a sweep over visiting Mayville State University at Roy Smith Field. BU won by scores of 4-0 and 7-4.
The Bruins improved to 16-10 on the season and 2-0 in the NSAA. Mayville fell to 7-7 overall and 0-2 in league play.
The two teams will conclude the four-game series with a noon doubleheader on Sunday at Roy Smith Field.
Game 1: Bellevue 4, Mayville State 0
Monique Ashley fired a four-hit complete-game shutout as the Bruins downed the Comets, 4-0 in the opener. Ashley struck out 10 batters with no walks to improve to 6-5 on the season.
Neither team threatened until a bases-clearing triple by Kelsey Arnold gave the Bruins a 3-0 lead in the bottom of the sixth. Randi Henry drove in Arnold with an infield single to increase the margin to 4-0.
After the Comets produced two singles to begin the top of the seventh, Ashley retired the final three batters, including two strikeouts, to secure the 4-0 win.
Shaye Kemball (2-4) suffered the loss, scattering six hits with one walk and six strikeouts in six innings of work.
Game 2: Bellevue 7, Mayville State 4
Despite three home runs from the Comets, the Bruins completed the sweep with the 7-4 victory in the nightcap.
Back-to-back solo homers by Nicole Bunting and Kemball gave MSU an early 2-0 lead in the top of the first inning.
The Bruins took a 4-2 lead in the bottom of the fourth inning on a run-scoring single to center field by Arnold, sacrifice flies to right field by Grace Glotfelty and Kayla Young and off a two-base error from MSU centerfielder Amanda Izzo.
The Comets responded in the top of the sixth with a two-run homer to left field by Jade Ledochowski, to cut the deficit to 7-4.
Brieanna Brock (6-1) picked up the win, giving up six hits and two walks with four strikeouts in 5 2/3 innings in the circle. Ashley earned her team-leading fourth save of the season, giving up just one hit with two strikeouts in the final 1 1/3 innings in relief.