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LW Softball exits NAIA Opening Round after 3-2 loss to Taylor

The Blue Raiders conclude their season with a 39-13 record.
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By Matthew Wurzburger

COLUMBIA, KY - (Tue 16 May 2017)- The top-seeded Lindsey Wilson softball team saw a two-run first-inning lead evaporate in Tuesday's elimination bracket loss against third-seeded Taylor (IN) in the NAIA Softball Opening Round -- Columbia (KY) Bracket at Marilyn D. Sparks Park.

The Trojans (39-17) evened the game with two runs in the top of the sixth before Erin Cozad blasted a go-ahead, solo home run in the seventh to give her team a 3-2 lead.

Both teams tallied seven hits on the day, but the Blue Raiders (39-13) stranded nine runners on base -- four more than Taylor.

Cassie Kooker and Amber Foukes led LWC with two hits apiece. Davis Carter recorded a two-hit afternoon for Taylor.

Lindsey Wilson jumped ahead with two quick runs in the bottom half of the first inning. Kooker and Callum Pilgrim led off the frame with a single followed by a walk. Following a strikeout, Foukes loaded the bases with a shallow single to the outfield. Kooker came home to score during the next at-bat, when Samantha Luckett singled to the shortstop. Pilgrim followed closely behind -- scoring on Bailey Mize's sacrifice fly.

Taylor Slade navigated around trouble during the first three innings of her outing -- leaving a total of four opposing base runners during that span.

The freshman righty worked around a leadoff walk in the top of the first inning and retired the next three batters she faced. Slade then escaped runners on first and second with only one out in the second inning.

Hannah Robbins replaced Courtney Moriarty in the circle after the first inning and kept the Blue Raider bats at bay for the remainder of the game. Robbins allowed just four hits across six shutout innings while walking three and striking out two.

Slade settled into a rhythm and set the Trojans down in order in both the fourth and fifth innings. She quickly recorded the first two outs in the top of the sixth inning, but the third out proved elusive as Taylor pushed across two runs on three hits.

Hannah Castor started the two-out rally with an infield single. Morgan Allison then singled back up the middle to put runners on first and second for Moriarty, who cleared the bases with a double into the right-center field gap.

The Blue Raiders threatened to regain the lead with a rally of their own in the bottom half of the frame. Mize singled with one out before exiting for pinch runner Kaylee Russell. Amy Rogers then singled to center field, and both runners moved up one base on a bobble by the center fielder. With runners on second and third and only one out the next two Lindsey Wilson batters went down quietly to end the inning.

Taylor produced the go-ahead run in the top of the seventh. Cozad hit a one-out, solo homer over the left field fence. The home run ended the day for Slade, who was replaced by Casey Bryan.

Slade allowed three runs on seven hits while striking out two and walking one.

Lindsey Wilson again threatened in the home half of the seventh. Kooker's leadoff single put the potential game-tying on base with no outs. Pilgrim then hit a sacrifice bunt to move Kooker into scoring position. Following a pop out by Syndey Fourman, Foukes walked to put runners on first and second, but Luckett grounded back to the circle to end the game.

The Blue Raiders conclude their season with a 39-13 record.

This story was posted on 2017-05-17 02:00:32
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