Lenoir-Rhyne Tops Jaguars in NCAA Regional
HICKORY, N.C. – The No. 3 seed Augusta State fell to the second-seeded Lenoir-Rhyne in game three of the 2010 NCAA Softball Championships on Saturday afternoon in Hickory, N.C.
The Jaguars dropped to 39-16 on the season, while the win moved Lenoir-Rhyne to 52-7 overall.
Lenoir-Rhyne got out to a hot start in the top of the first scoring two runs. With runners on first and second, sophomore catcher Sarah Atkins reached on an attempted sacrifice bunt and was safe due to a throwing error by the third baseman. Senior left fielder Brittany Cherry scored on the play.
The Bears made it 2-0 on the next at bat as junior shortstop Kat Rivers doubled to right centerfield, scoring sophomore second baseman Carlee Carpenter.
Augusta State responded in the bottom of the first inning. Senior catcher Alysha Krier blasted a home run to left centerfield that cleared the scoreboard, making the score 2-1. The round-tripper was Krier’s third of the 2010 campaign.
Lenoir-Rhyne loaded the bases in the top of the second inning. Atkins lined a 1-2 pitch over the left field fence for her 13th home run of the season, giving the Bears a 6-1 lead.
L-R added two runs in the third inning. With two outs and one on, Rivers hit her 20th home run of the season to take an 8-1 lead.
With two outs and two runners on in the bottom of the third inning, sophomore right fielder Kristen Jones tagged a three-run homer to left field for her team-leading 13th of the season, closing the gap to 8-4.
The Bears added three more runs in the top of the fifth to lead 11-4. With two on, Atkins connected on her second home run of the day as she hit a towering drive to right centerfield.
Lenoir-Rhyne tacked on five runs in the top of the seventh to make the final margin 16-4. Cherry hit a two-run home run to right centerfield for her 10th round-tripper of the season.
Rivers, Cherry and Carpenter each recorded three hits on the day while Atkins was two-for-three with seven RBI.
L-R freshman Alex Smith earned the win for the Bears, allowing just seven hits and no walked batters while striking out nine for her 25th win of the season.
The Jag’s sophomore pitcher Sara DeMuth fell to 16-9 on the year with the loss. Sophomore Emily Corish pitched five innings in relief for Augusta State, striking out four.