|March 05, 2014||1||2||3||4||5||6||7||R||H||E|
|Win: ANDERSON (7-0)||7.0||5||1||0||1||7|
|Loss: DORSEY (9-0)||6.0||5||2||2||3||5|
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Atlantic Sun Conference games are always a challenge each weekend for the Lipscomb Lady Bisons, but coach Kristin Ryman isn’t letting her players cruise through an easy schedule of mid-week games in order to let them relax.
Wednesday afternoon at 2 p.m. Ohio University visits for a doubleheader at Smith Stadium at Draper Diamond. Ohio University is 12-6 after losing its last five games. The Lady Bisons are 15-3 and winners of four of their last five outings.
“They are off to a great start,” Ryman said. “They are in every game they play even against top-notch teams.
“They are definitely going to be a tough mid-week challenge for us. I think that this is good timing for us.”
The Lady Bisons are coming off a 2-1 series win at North Florida to open the Atlantic Sun Conference portion of the season.
“We had a great weekend, but we also had a long weekend,” Ryman said. “We had a lot of mistakes early on that we had to find a way mentally and physically to overcome.
“We are going to be challenged against Ohio. That is what we need at this point of the season. Our girls need that constant challenge.”
At this point of the season Ryman is looking for consistency from her players.
“We need to stay on track,” Ryman said. “One of the things we definitely know about our team is when we start well and sustain it we are winning games. When we score first we are winning games.
“We have to limit our errors. We have to make sure that defensively we are playing aggressive, but that we are playing smart. We have to control things we can control.”
The top pitchers for the Bobcats are Lauren McClary and Savannah Jo Dorsey. McClary threw a 1-0 no-hitter against North Florida Feb. 16. Ohio University also has wins over Iowa and South Carolina.
“Ohio pitches well,” Ryman said. “Offensively, we are going to have to make adjustments quickly.
“We are going to have to make sure that even if we strike out a few times early in the game that we are adjusting quickly to that and not still striking out in the fifth, sixth or seventh innings.”
Adrienne Gebele leads Ohio University with a .418 batting average and a .636 slugging percentage.
Batting above .300 for the Bobcats are Amanda Dalton (.333), Madison Claytor (.320) and Casie Hutchinson (.315).
Brianne Welch leads the Lady Bisons in hitting with a .404 average batting from the No. 9 spot in the order. Also at .400 is Gracey Aguirre.
Paige Neely is close behind at .397 followed by Rena’ Cothron at .350 and Kristen Sturdivant at .306.
Left-hander Ashley Anderson, who won her first A-Sun Pitcher of the Week award this week, threw 12 shutout innings at North Florida for two shutout wins. She is 6-0 with a 0.89 earned run average.
Tanner Sanders is 6-1 with a 2.81 ERA.
Heather Parker is 3-2 with a 3.50 ERA. She has struck out 23 batters in 24 innings.
“Pitching-wise, we are looking to get Tanner back on track a little bit,” Ryman said. “She only threw one inning at North Florida and kind of had a rough go at it.
“We also want to make sure we are continuing to keep the ball rolling with Heather as well as with Ashley. Mid-week games are tough even when you play a double-header. We have three really good pitchers and we are trying to get them all innings and prepare for the weekend.”
The Lady Bisons continue the home stand Saturday with a doubleheader against A-Sun foe Florida Gulf Coast at 1 p.m. The two teams close out the series Sunday at 1.
Said Ryman, “Whatever innings we do get from our pitchers we want to see that they are making adjustments in the circle, just like our hitters are making adjustments at the plate.”