COCHRAN, GA - Softball dropped their first SSAC game of the season in a split of Friday's doubleheader with the Bethel University Wildcats. The Knights are now 18-8 on the season and 7-1 in SSAC play as they dropped game 1 by a score of 2-1 and won game 2 in 6 innings by a score of 11-3.
In game 1, the Wildcats got a run in the first with a pair of hits and an error to take a 1-0 lead after an inning. The Knights tied the game in the 2nd with a sacrifice fly by Meagan Coleman to score Taylor Sheffield while the go-ahead run was stranded at 3rd. The teams had a combined 4 hits in the 3rd through the 6th and went to the 7th tied at 1. The Wildcats scored a run in the top of the 7th after a single, sacrifice bunt, and a dropped fly ball by Ny'Asia Howard allowing the go-ahead run to score. The Knights got a double from Margaret Simmons to lead off the 7th inning but 3 straight strike outs preserved the win for the Wildcats. Caroline Newton took the loss for the Knights and is now 7-4 on the season. She struck out 5 batters and gave up 5 hits with 1 walk and 1 earned run in 7.0 innings of work.
Game 2 saw a better result for the Knights but did not start off well. The Wildcats scored first with a pair of runs in the 1st on just 1 hit. The Knights got a solo home run from Madison Bivins in the bottom of the 1st to trail 2-1 after 1. Sydney Shackelford settled in and did not give up any hits in the 2nd and the Knights answered with 4 hits and 4 runs in the 2nd. Singles by Brittany Wilt, Howard, and Simmons loaded the bases for Newton's grand slam which was her 2nd home run of the season and a 5-2 lead for the Knights. The Knights put up 3 more in the 3rd as Meagan Coleman scored on a wild pitch followed by an RBI singles from Wilt and Bivins for a 8-2 lead. In the 4th, the Wildcats got a run on a hit and an error but still trailed by 5 and the Knights added 2 more in the 4th. An RBI single by Emilie Lawrence and RBI groundout by Wilt extended the lead to 7 at 10-3 after 4. Neither team got anything in the 5 or top of the 6th but with 2 outs in the 6th, Lawrence and Wilt singled and Wilt got caught in a run down between 1st and 2nd allowing Lawrence to score the run to extend the lead to 8 and end the game. Shackelford got the win throwing 6.0 innings with just 5 hits allowed, 2 earned runs, 2 walks, and a strike out.
The same two teams will meet at 1PM on Saturday, March 23rd in Cochran.