FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. --- The Lees-McRae College softball team opened the 2011 season in impressive fashion, sweeping a doubleheader against Fayetteville State University on Sunday afternoon by scores of 4-0 and 8-2.
Lees-McRae (2-0) posted a .250 batting average on the day, scoring a combined 12 runs on 13 hits while holding the Broncos (0-2) to two tallies on 10 base knocks. The Bobcat pitching staff also struck out a combined 13 batters on the day.
Lindsey Huntsinger (Asheville, N.C.) paced the Bobcats with a 4-for-6 day, including three base hits in the night cap, while tying Paige Coleman (Thomasville, N.C.), Kim Coley (Marion, N.C.), and Anna Carter (Hurdle Mills, N.C.) for the team-high with two runs batted in. Coleman, Coley, and Kierstie Moon (Oxford, Ga.) each tallied a pair of base knocks on the day, as Huntsinger recorded a trio of stolen bases.
Laurel Gregg (Mars Hill, N.C.) tossed a two-hit shutout in game one, fanning eight batters in six innings of work to notch her first career win at LMC. Magen West (Whitney, Texas) followed in the night cap, allowing one run on four hits in five innings of work to earn the victory. Freshman Hollie Crickenberger (Boydton, Va.) pitched a total of three frames on the day in relief, allowing one run on four hits and striking out three Broncos.
Game One: Lees-McRae 4, Fayetteville State 0 (Box Score)
Lees-McRae got on the board early in game one, pushing across the season's first run when Moon drew a leadoff walk, advanced to second on a sacrifice, moved to third on a wild pitch, and scored on a sacrifice by Huntsinger.
The Bobcats doubled the lead on a Coley RBI single in the fourth that scored Coleman from second. Meagan Knowles (West Palm Beach, Fla.) scampered home on a passed ball in the fifth to push the lead to 3-0 before Huntsinger scored on a sacrifice fly by Coleman in the sixth to cap the scoring.
Game Two: Lees-McRae 8, Fayetteville State 2 (Box Score)
The Bobcats took an early 2-0 lead in the first inning when Moon scored on a wild pitch, and Huntsinger stole third and scored on a Bronco error. Fayetteville State answered in the bottom of the inning, cutting the margin in half when Quristeen Brown (Greensboro, N.C.) doubled home April Branch (Watha, N.C.) to cut the lead to 2-1.
Lees-McRae responded in the third, pushing across two runs when Coleman reached on a Bronco error, allowing Huntsinger and Karli Robb (Hayes, Va.) to score and widen the margin to 4-1. The Bobcats then broke the game open in the fifth, scoring four runs on three hits and a Bronco error to push the lead to 8-1. An RBI double by Huntsinger and a two-run two-bagger by Carter highlighted the inning for the Bobcats.
Fayetteville State showed some fight in the late innings, stranding a runner in scoring position in the sixth before Ashley Wlezen (Charlotte, N.C.) singled home Olivia Peavey (Siler City, N.C.) after Peavey stroked a lead-off double in the frame. Crickenberger then shut the door, recording a pair of strikeouts with runners in scoring position to quell the rally.
Lees-McRae returns to the diamond on Monday when the Bobcats travel to Raleigh, N.C. to take on Shaw University in a non-conference doubleheader. The twin-bill, rescheduled from Saturday, is slated to begin at 12:00 p.m.
- LMC -