RALEIGH, N.C. – The Mississippi University for Women's softball team put up a great effort against two high ranked team in day two of the Triangle Classic. Despite a tremendous effort, The W was unable to turn the effort into a win. The Owls fell 7-5 to Roanoke College and 6-4 to Averett University to fall to 5-5 on the season.
Game One (L, 7-5)
The Owls battled hard against the Maroons, working hard to prevent the loss. After being down 3-1 at the bottom of two innings with four back-to-back walks, Cara Hopper entered the game as the fourth pitcher on the mound for the Owls. As the only senior pitcher, Hopper showed her experience, getting the Owls out of a tough situation and effectively set the team up for a comeback.
In the top of the fifth, The W bats caught fire and the Owls were able to score three runs on four hits to tie the game. Katlyn Duke doubled to leftfield to allow Heidi Matthews to score. Brianna Duquette singled to centerfield to send Duke and Kristen Martin home for two RBIs with the tying runs.
The Maroons quickly answered in the bottom of the inning with an additional run to regain the lead. Roanoke did the not hold the new found lead long because the Owls push backed with a fifth run in the top of the seventh to retie the game.
With one out in the inning, a Roanoke batter hit a homerun out to leftfield to score two runs and end the game.
Hopper, a Steen, Miss. native, was credited with her first loss on the mound. The right-hander pitched 5.0 innings for two hits against, three runs (two-earned), one walk, and one strikeout. Her record falls to 1-1 on the season.
At the plate, Bailee Watts led the Owls with a 2-for-3 appearance, recording one run and one RBI. The junior catcher Duquette led her team in RBIs with two.
Game Two (L, 6-4)
Game two of the day started off slow offensively for the Owls with The W scoring its first runs of the game in the top of third. With the two runs scored, the Owls were able to pull ahead of Averett who had previously scored a run in the bottom of the first.
The Owls did not hold the lead for long. The Cougars answered The W's scoring effort with four runs in the bottom of the third to pull ahead 5-2.
In the sixth inning, The W was unable to make it around the bases and Averett scored their sixth and final run of the game to seal the win.
Cara Hopper collected her second loss on the mound to go 1-2 on the season. The senior pitched 2.1 innings for six hits against, five earned runs, three walks, and two strikeouts.
Offensively, Anna Lloyd led the Owls at the plate with a 2-for-4 appearance with one run and Wilkinson led the Owls with two RBIs.
The Owls look to prevent the tournament shutout with two games on the third and final day. The W will begin the day at 9 a.m. EST/ 10 p.m. CST versus Randolph College. Their second game against Methodist will start as soon as game one is completed.
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