04/07/05 — MOC softball

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MOC softball

Published in Sports on April 7, 2005 1:57 PM

MOUNT OLIVE -- After scoring only one run on nine hits in the first game, Mount Olive College head softball coach Jaime Kylis told her players between games Wednesday afternoon that getting on base wasn't enough, that the team had to put runs on the scoreboard.

In the second game, the message hit home for the Trojans - three times in the third and again in the sixth.

Bailey Harrell's RBI double capped a three-run third inning and Shauna Cowdrey tossed a five-hitter as Mount Olive defeated Barton 4-1 in game two to gain a split in their CVAC softball doubleheader at Nancy Chapman Cassell Field.

In the first game, Ashley Napoles pitched a two-hitter for the Trojans, but Barton struck for two runs in the second inning and held on for a 2-1 victory. The Trojans outhit Barton 9-2 in the game.

Mount Olive (13-26, 5-11 CVAC) had five hits in the first two innings of game one, but was unable to push a run across the plate.

Melissa Bright led off the bottom of the first with a single but was doubled up on a pop up on a sacrifice attempt. Napoles and Bailey Harrell followed with two-out singles, but Barton pitcher Jayme Beacham got out of the inning with a strikeout.

The Trojans had runners on second and third with two outs in the next inning on singles by Jamie Pruitt and Erin Wilson, but a foul out ended the rally.

"We've been getting runners on base, but we haven't been moving them in," said Kylis. "I told our offensive leaders we need to have better mental focus in the batter's box."

Barton (10-16, 5-3) got on the scoreboard in the top of the second as Jennifer Mitchell singled with one out and the Bulldogs loaded the bases on a hit batsman and a walk. Jessica Tedder drew a walk on a full count to drive in the first run and Garner Howard's sacrifice bunt drove in a run to give Barton a 2-0 lead. Mitchell had both of Barton's hits.

Beacham (5-5) retired nine consecutive batters until Kim Goens led off the bottom of the fifth for the Trojans with a single, stole second and moved to third on Thomas' second sacrifice of the game. Bright followed with a double to the left field fence to pull the Trojans within one. Bright moved to third on a ground out to short, but the rally ended on a ground out to third.

Napoles (2-11) allowed a fourth-inning single, then retired the side in order in each of the last three innings, retiring the final 10 batters she faced to keep Mount Olive within a run. The Trojans had the tying run in scoring position with one out in the second, but Beacham sealed the win with a strikeout and ground out.

In the second game, Mount Olive put runners on second and third with nobody out in the bottom of the third as Emily Escolas drew a lead-off walk, Kim Goens singled to center and both runners advanced when Goens' hit was misplayed.

The Trojans took a two-run lead on back-to-back sacrifice flies to right by Jackie Wyman and Bright. Wilson followed with a single, went to second on a single by Napoles and scored on Harrell's line double to right-center to give Mount Olive a 3-0 lead.

Cowdrey (6-11) held Barton scoreless until the top of the sixth when Courtney Bunch led off with a triple to right and scored on Jenna Gregory's single up the middle. But Bright charged the infield to snag a short pop-up at second base and flipped to Erin Case at first for the double play to quiet the rally.

Kylis says the double play was the most pivotal play of the game.

"Barton came out with fire to start the sixth inning, but that double play shut them down," said Kylis. "It was a great heads-up play by Melissa and Erin."

Mount Olive answered with a run in the bottom of the sixth as Kristie Smith hit a leadoff single and pinch-runner Alexis Briley stole second and came around to score on two wild pitches to give the Trojans a three-run lead.

Cowdrey allowed a one-out pinch-hit single in the top of the seventh, but Wilson caught her second fly ball of the inning in left field and Goens fielded a grounder at short to end the game. Cowdrey struck out six and walked none.

Cowdrey and Napoles combined to allow two earned runs and seven hits in the doubleheader.

"We got excellent pitching performances from Shauna and Ashley," said Kylis. "They do a great job of bouncing back.

"It feels good to get a win," "We needed that one."

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