Falcons rally for sweep of Bobcats

Falcons rally for sweep of Bobcats

BANNER ELK, N.C. --- Hanna Huckabee (Oak Ridge, N.C.) drove in two runs, and Kristen Oakes (Lenoir, N.C.) tallied three hits to pace the Lees-McRae College softball team on Sunday afternoon, as Pfeiffer University rallied for a doubleheader sweep in Conference Carolinas play at the Bobcat Softball Field.

Pfeiffer (16-22, 6-8 CC) rallied for a 7-6 victory in game one, overcoming a 4-2 deficit to win in extra innings, before outscoring Lees-McRae (7-34, 2-12 CC) by an 8-0 margin in the night cap. The Falcons tallied 27 hits in the twin-bill, as the Bobcats posted 12 base knocks on the day.

Oakes led the way for the Bobcats with three hits, as Huckabee, Sadie Lagle (Harmony, N.C.), and Kierstie Moon (Oxford, Ga.) added a pair of base knocks. Huckabee drove in two runs, as Lagle, Lori Fulmer (Prosperity, S.C.), Amanda Decker (Apex, N.C.), and Jessica Smith (Gastonia, N.C.) each chipped in a RBI.

Hollie Crickenberger (Boydton, Va.) got the nod in game one, allowing five earned runs and striking out three in eight innings of work. Oakes took the ball in the night cap, surrendering four earned runs and striking out two through seven frames.

Celia Dew paced the Falcons with five hits, as Julianna Bullington, Lindsey Russell, and Tyresha Ellis each added four base knocks. Russell drove in five runs, while Ellis and Ashlee Ellen each added two RBI.

Russell made the start in game one, allowing three earned runs on seven hits in six innings before being relieved by Samantha Jarmusch, who surrendered one unearned run in two frames. Jarmusch got the nod in game two, holding the Bobcats to three hits in seven shutout innings.

Game One: Pfeiffer 7, Lees-McRae 6 – 8 innings (Box Score)

The Bobcats jumped out to an early 2-0 lead in the bottom of the first, plating runs on a single by Decker and a bases-loaded walk by Smith. Pfeiffer answered with two runs in the third, evening the tally at 2-2 following a two-run home run by Ellen to left field.

Lees-McRae quickly responded with two runs in the bottom of the inning, reclaiming the advantage at 4-2 on a two-run single by Huckabee which scored Oakes and Lagle. The Bobcats would hold the two-run lead into the top of the seventh, when Pfeiffer plated three runs to take a 5-4 advantage on a run-scoring single by Shelby Brown.

The Bobcats countered with one run in the bottom of the frame, knotting the score at 5-5 on a clutch single by Fulmer that scored Oakes from third to force extra innings. Pfeiffer struck quickly in the top of the eighth, plating two runs to take a 7-5 lead when Jarmusch dropped a single into right field with two outs.

Lees-McRae wasted no time in the bottom half, halving the margin to 7-6 on an RBI double to left center by Lagle, which scored Moon from second. Jarmusch recovered swiftly, recording two quick outs before forcing a fly out to left field to quell the rally and clinch the come-from-behind victory.

Game Two: Pfeiffer 8, Lees-McRae 0 (Box Score)

Pfeiffer carried the momentum into the night cap, taking an early 1-0 lead in the top of the first. The Bobcats threatened in the bottom of the third, putting runners on the corners with two outs when Moon reached on catcher's interference, before Jarmusch retired the final batter of the inning on a popup to first.

The Falcons answered with two runs in the fourth, pushing the lead to 3-0 on an RBI single by Ellis. Pfeiffer added four in the fifth, stretching the advantage to 7-0 following a two-run base knock from Russell.

The Bobcats threatened in the bottom half, putting runners on second and third following a double by Moon and a single by Kendal Fowler (Buford, Ga.), before Jarmusch forced a popup to second to end the inning. Pfeiffer would widen the gap to 8-0 with a run in the seventh, as Jarmusch retired the final four batters she faced to seal the victory.

Lees-McRae returns to the diamond on Saturday, April 13 when the Bobcats host North Greenville University in a Conference Carolinas doubleheader, beginning at 2 p.m.

- LMC -