The Lenoir-Rhyne Softball Team earned a pair of clutch wins on Sunday afternoon against UNC-Pembroke at UNCP Softball Field. The Bears took game one in nine innings, 6-5, and were down to their final strike in game two before rallying for a six-run seventh inning to stun the Braves, 10-6.
In game one that the Bears won 6-5, the Braves got on the board with back-to-back home runs by Tatum Brummitt and Emily Biddle to open the bottom of the second. LR cut the lead in half with an unearned run in the top of the 4th. Lauren Rakes scored after an throwing error by the Braves pitcher. After the Braves scored in the bottom of the 5th to take a 3-1 lead, the Bears got RBI singles from Kailey Travis, Savannah Moorefield and Talon LaClair to gave the Bears a 4-3 lead. UNC-Pembroke tied it with a safety squeeze bunt by Jordan Adcox in the bottom of the sixth as the game advanced to extra innings
Hannah Jennings gave LR a 5-4 lead in the top of the eighth with a bunt to score Kendall Osborne. However, the Braves answered in the bottom of the inning with a run-scoring single to send it to the ninth. Freshman Payton Bryant had the game-winning RBI in the ninth on a single to left that scored Kylee Leonhardt.
In the circle, Bryant got two quick outs before hititng a UNCP batter. The game ended on a fielders choice as Bryant improved to 2-0 on the season
In game two, after Pembroke scored in the third, the Bears finally got on the board with a solo home run by Leonhardt in the fifth. Travis added an RBI single to give LR a 2-1 lead but the Braves would tie the game in the bottom half of the sixth. The Bears pushed across a pair in the top of the sxith but UNCP erupted for four runs in the bottom half of the inning to grab a 6-4 advantage.
Trailing by two in the seventh, two of the first three batters were retired for LR but three straight walks cut the Braves lead to 6-5. Down to the final strike, Leonhardt crushed a double to clear the bases and put the Bears up 8-6. LaClair added a run scoring double and scored on the second UNCP error of the inning. UNC-Pembroke went down 1-2-3 in the bottom of the seventh as the Bears completed the comeback win.
Freshmen McKayla Watts earned the win in the circle.
The game was the first matchup between these teams since the 2014 season and first trip to Pembroke since opening the 2011 season there.
With playing Flagler Saturday and UNC-Pembroke on Sunday, the Bears have played all members of the Peach Belt Conference in the last three years except for Georgia Southwestern. The Bears have only played Georgia Southwestern one time, back in 2008.
The Bears are 4-2 on the season after playing six games in three days. LR will open SAC play on the road at Coker on Wednesday. First pitch is scheduled for 1:00 PM.