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Cassidy Wall
Cassidy Wall's home run gave the Bears the win in the first game of a doubleheader against Mars Hill.
photo courtesy of Lenoir-Rhyne Athletics

Lenoir-Rhyne Softball Snatches Doubleheader Victory

Cassidy Wall’s walkoff home run completed the Bears come back to sweep of visiting Tusculum on Saturday. The Bears were down 4-0 in the second game before tying it on Lora Beth Wood’s two-run homerun in the fifth. Wall then walked it off with a leadoff bomb in the bottom of the seventh for the 6-5 win. In game one, Wall, Lauren Rakes and Anna Blume all homered to give the Bears a 10-2 victory. Wall ended the day 4-7 with 2 HR’s and 4 RBIs.

In game one, Wall extended her hitting streak to eleven games with her two-run homerun in the bottom of the first. Back to back bombs from Rakes and Blume in the bottom of the 4th gave the Bears a 4-0 lead and chased the Pioneers starter Ireland Cavanaugh.
Tusculum cut the lead in half with a two-run long ball from Claire Smeltzer in the 5th.

The Bears got one of those runs back after Rackard led off the inning with a bunt single then scored on a Wall RBI single. LR ended the game with five runs in the bottom of the 6th without recording an out highlighted by two-run doubles from Blume and Julia Mardigian.

Rakes got the win in the circle, throwing 4 2/3 innings while striking out eight while Morgan Beeler picked up her third save. Beelers threw 1 1/3 hitless innings in relief.

In game two, after the first three innings were scoreless, both teams lit up the scoreboard in the 4th inning. After Tusculum scored four runs in the top half, the Bears scored three of their own. After a Tusculum error kept the inning alive, Rackard and Mardigian delivered RBI singles.

Pioneers got one of the runs back in the top of the 5th but Wood connected for her third home run of the season to tie the game at five in the 5th. Wall then took the first pitch she saw in the bottom of the the over the center field wall to give the Bears the sweep.

Mardigian finished 3-4 on the contest which was her 4th career three-hit game. Beeler got the start and went 4 2/3 allowing five runs (three earned) while striking out six.

Brooklin Heavner (2-0) got the win in relief as the sophomore pitched 2 1/3 innings of hitless ball in the circle.

The Bears have won six straight games against Tusculum With the sweep, Head Coach Shena Hollar has 950 career wins. Wall extended her hitting streak to 12 games and Rackard to 10 games as the duo went 8-15 on the day. The program record is 22 games set by Savannah Moorefield.

Blume’s home run was her first of her career.

Beeler’s save in the first game was her fifth career save. Beeler is just one of three players with five career saves.

Rakes came into game with a 2-1 record lifetime record against Tusculum with a 0.58 ERA including a no-hitter in last years SAC Quarterfinals. The one loss for Rakes was a 1-0 10 inning complete game where Tusculum’s Emily Sappington threw a no-hitter. The run Rakes give up was unearned in the top of the 10th inning.

LR moves to 19-12 when tied after six innings since the beginning of the 2015 season.

The Bears are 17-3 overall, 2-2 in the South Atlantic Conference. LR will step out of conference play to host Francis Marion on Wednesday afternoon at Bears Field. First-pitch is scheduled for 3:00 PM.