BURLINGTON, N.C. – The Lees-McRae College softball team made history Sunday afternoon as it captured its first-ever Conference Carolinas Tournament Championship by defeating Southern Wesleyan University by a score of 2-0. The Bobcats, who entered the tournament as the No. 5 seed, are the lowest seed to win the league tournament since 2012 when King University captured the title after finishing the season fifth in the league as well.
As the final score would indicate there was not a ton offense in Sunday's championship game. Both runs came in the bottom of the fourth. Kara Cunningham got things started with a single, which was followed by a walk by Faith Cooke. The big hit came next with senior Emily Merriam coming through with a two-run double to plate the only two runs of the contest.
Cunningham was once again outstanding in the circle for the Bobcats tossing her sixth shutout of the season. The six shutouts gives Cunningham yet another program record to her name as she is now the single-season shutout leader with those six. The senior from Indian Trail, North Carolina tossed seven innings allowing just four hits to go along with nine strikeouts.
For her work not only on Sunday but throughout the tournament, Cunningham was named the tournament's Most Valuable Player. Teammates Noel Cassidy, Julie Gast and Katelyn Wyatt were honored after the tournament as well as they were named to the All-Tournament team.
Lees-McRae will have to wait a week to not only find out who its opponent will be but also where it will go in its first NCAA Tournament appearance. The NCAA Division II Selection Show will take place on Monday May 6 at 10 a.m. on NCAA.com.