Trojans Split With Limestone In Battle Of Conference Carolinas Softball Co-Leaders

Trojans Split With Limestone In Battle Of Conference Carolinas Softball Co-Leaders

Carly White took a two-hit shutout into the seventh inning and survived a no-out bases loaded jam for her fifth consecutive complete game victory as Mount Olive defeated Limestone 6-1 in game one of a Conference Carolinas softball doubleheader Saturday at Nancy Chapman Cassell Field. Savannah Becker went 3-for-3 with two runs batted in and Cassie Lowe belted a three-run homer and drove in four runs for the Trojans. Becker and Lowe, the Nos. 8 and 9 batters in the lineup, combined to go 5-for-6 with all six Trojan rbi's.

The Trojans had their eight-game winning streak snapped in game two, falling 6-5. Katie Moore hit a three-run homer for Mount Olive. With the split, the Trojans are tied for first place in the conference standings with Limestone and King.

In game one, Mount Olive (19-7 overall, 6-2 Conference Carolinas) led 6-0 going into the seventh inning and appeared to have a routine first out, but miscommunication allowed Dallas Heaton's pop-up to drop in front of the left-hand batter's box for a leadoff single. The next batter walked and Jessica Ramsey hit a clean single to left to load the bases. White lost her shutout bid on Kayla Kelly's sacrifice fly to left. Trojan right fielder Danielle Mitchell had the final two putouts, including a running back-handed catch on a line shot to right to end the game.

White (9-2) struck out five, including three in a row in the first and second innings. She walked only one batter and finished with a four-hitter.

The Trojans broke a scoreless tie in the bottom of the fourth as Christie Wright singled and Lauren McGrath walked with one, both on nine-pitch at bats. One-out later, Becker blooped a double to shallow left center to bring Wright home with the first run of the game. McGrath scored when Becker beat the throw to third on Lowe's ground ball to the left side as the Trojans took a 2-0 lead.

Limestone starter Shelly Webb (4-7) struck out six and kept the Saints in striking range until Mount Olive broke the game open with four runs in the bottom of the sixth.

McGrath led off with a single to left and Jesse Crist beat out a bunt single. Becker singled to left-center to drive in McGrath and give Mount Olive a 3-0 lead. Lowe then sent a 3-2 pitch over the left-center field fence for her first home run of the season.

In game two, Mount Olive rallied from a two-run deficit as Beth Overman sparked a four-run third inning with an rbi-single and Moore sent a towering fly ball that just cleared the left field fence to give the Trojans a 4-2 lead. Moore's home run was her third of the year.

Limestone (10-12, 6-2) rallied to tie the game 4-4 as Kirstyn Burleson singled in a run in the fourth and Paige Bolding delivered a run-scoring double in the fifth. The Saints took the lead for good in the sixth on Ramsey's sacrifice fly. Burleson scored what proved to be the winning run on a wild pitch.

The Trojans got a run back in the bottom of the seventh after Kalie Smith drew a leadoff walk and eventually scored on the second wild pitch of the inning. But Limestone reliever Kelly Shearer (1-0) struck out the final two batters to pick up the win. Shearer, who entered the game with only four innings pitched this season, allowed only the lone run in three hitless innings.

Mount Olive was outhit 14-5, but benefited from seven walks. Defensively, Smith and Overman combined on a pair of inning-ending 5-3 double plays. Both teams missed out on opportunities, each leaving 10 runners on base. The Trojans left the bases loaded in the fourth and fifth innings.

Mount Olive and Limestone entered Saturday tied for the conference lead, percentage points ahead of King.

Mount Olive plays host to Lees-McRae in a Conference Carolinas doubleheader Monday at Nancy Chapman Cassell Field. The twinbill was originally scheduled for Sunday, but moved back a day due to a 90 percent chance of rain. Game time is 2 p.m.