CENTRAL, S.C. – The Owls softball team splits doubleheader action at Southern Wesleyan University on Monday, March 11. The W took game one 6-3 and dropped game two 6-4 for an 8-8 overall record.
GAME ONE (W, 6-3)
Madison Scoggin pitched her fourth complete game of the season to improve her record on the mound to 4-3. The Bay Springs native pitched the entire seven innings for three strikeouts, 10 hits against, and three runs (two earned).
At the plate, second baseman Heidi Matthews had the most successful outing going 2-for-3 with one run. Other standouts were Kristen Martin and Katlyn Duke who collected two RBIs and Anna Lloyd who scored two runs.
The Owls started game one on a high note with The W scoring the first run of the game in the top of the first. Martin grabbed the RBI on a ground out to second base that gave Lloyd the room to score.
The W defense held firm, keeping the Warriors scoreless until the bottom of the third with SWU scoring one run in the inning to tie the game.
In the fifth, SWU scored an additional two runs to grab its first lead of the day at 3-1.
Still fighting for the win, the Owls had a big offensive surge in the top of the seventh to score five runs for a 6-3 lead. Martin recorded her second RBI with a single to left field that brought Kandler Flora home. Duke singled then advanced on a throw that allowed Matthews and Lloyd to score. Brianna Duquette grounded out for an RBI that allowed Martin to score and Bailey Johnston sent a sacrifice bunt to the pitcher to push Duke home.
In the bottom of the inning, the Owls did the work defensively to secure the victory for their first win of the eight-game road stretch.
GAME TWO (L, 6-4)
Entering the game to relieve starting pitcher Cara Hopper, Ciara Steward (1-1) received her first loss on the mound. The junior left-hander pitched 3.2 innings for two strikeouts, six hits against, and four earned runs.
In game two, the Owls were again able to grab an early lead with a run scored in the top of the first. Duquette was credited with the game's first RBI on a fielder's choice that allowed Anna Lloyd to score.
The Warriors made it to the scoreboard with two runs scored in the bottom of the third and the Owls answered with two runs of their own in the top of the fourth.
SWU scored its third run in the bottom of the fourth to tie the game but the Owls regained the lead with a final run in the top of the fifth.
The Warriors offense continued to push against The W's defense and with a homerun in the fifth for two runs and a single in the sixth for an additional run, SWU took the game 6-4.
COACH TAT'S THOUGHTS
"In game one, we played really well. We played decent defense and our bats came alive. We scored five runs in the seventh and played like we should have all day. Scoggin threw well and we supported her with late game runs.
"In game two, we struggled a bit. Our pitching struggled and our defense wasn't as solid as it needed to be. They capitalized on us not being aggressive in the field and we couldn't recover."
The Owls will return to action on Tuesday, March 13 when they take on Converse in the first two games of a four game series. The first pitch is scheduled for 3 p.m. EST/ 2 p.m. CDT.
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