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L-R Softball Drops Doubleheader at Limestone
The Lenoir-Rhyne Softball Team suffered two tough losses to open conference play on Wednesday afternoon at Limestone. In game one, the Saints scored four runs with two outs in the bottom of the 6th to come back and beat the Bears 4-2. After Cassidy Wall tied the game in the top of the 7th in the second game, Limestone pushed one across in the bottom of the 7th to walk off and sweep the Bears, 4-3. Wall had five hits on the day to extend her hitting streak to ten straight games.
In game one, after the first three innings were scoreless, the Bears scored in the top of the 4th after a sacrifice fly from Lauren Jackson brought home Julia Mardigian. Kaylan Brown doubled the lead with an RBI double in the 5th. The double was the freshman’s 4th of the season already.
Lauren Rakes was cruising until two outs in the sixth inning with the Saints broke through for four runs including the game-winning three-run homerun from Santana Anderson. Anderson’s homerun just snuck inside the left field foul pole to give Limestone their first lead of the day. Rakes suffered her first loss on the season in the circle. Rakes stuck out seven while giving up the four runs.
LaClair and Cassidy Wall each went 2-4 and had half the Bears’ eight hits. It was only the Bears 11th loss since 2015 when leading after five innings (124-11).
In game two, Katelyn Rackard led off the second game with a single, stole second, advance to third and scored on back-to-back ground outs as the Bears manufactured an early run. Defense let the Bears down as the Saints scored an unearned run in both the first and second innings to grab an early 2-1 lead.
The Bears tied it in the third after a passed ball allowed LaClair to score. After the Saints threw out LaClair trying to score to end the top of the 5th, Limestone took the lead after another clutch RBI from Anderson.
Down to their final out, Wall singled up the middle on a 2-1 pitch to bring in pitch-runner Alycea Gilliam to extend the game. It was Wall’s 4th career three-hit game. After working a one out walk, Lacie Coubal stole second then came around to score on Katie Wilbur infield single that got under Rackard’s glove and bounced a few feet behind her allowing Coubal to score the winning run.
Beeler (8-2) went the distance for the Bears in the circle, only allowing one earned run while striking out eight.
After winning 18 of their first 20 games in Gaffney, the Bears drop to 18-4 all-time at Limestone. With two hits in game one and three hits in game three, Wall extended her hitting streak to ten games. Wall has also reached base in all 16 games she has played this year.
The Bears did move up two spots to No. 21 in this week’s NFCA Coaches’ Poll. LR did not hit any home runs. The Bears came in hitting a home run in 14 of their first 16 games on the season.
The Bears are 15-3, 0-2 SAC. LR will return home to face Tusculum on Saturday. First-pitch is scheduled for 2:00 PM.