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February 14, 2014123456RHE
Win: ANDERSON (2-0) 6.030031
Loss: Schmidt (0-3) 4.054333
Pierce (DU) 301000
Randel (DU) 201010
Buck (DU) 201000
NEELY (LIP) 323411
Strong start building confidence for Lady Bisons softball
Friday, February 14, 2014
By Mark McGee
Strong start building confidence for Lady Bisons softball

WACO, Texas – Two solid pitching performances propelled the Lipscomb Lady Bisons to a pair of victories in the first day of the Getterman Classic at Baylor University.

Right-hander Tanner Sanders, 3-0, earned her first shutout of the season as the Lady Bisons beat Iowa 10-0 in the opening game Fridaymorning. The game was called after five innings due to the run-rule. It is the second year in a row the Lady Bisons have shut out Iowa, winning last year 4-0.

The Lady Bisons have a 3-0 edge over Iowa in their series. Iowa drops to 2-3 for the season.

In the afternoon the Lady Bisons (6-0) extended their season-opening winning streak to six games after an 8-0 win over Drake.  Left-hander Ashley Anderson went the distance for the Lady Bisons, earning her second win of the season. Drake is 0-5.

“It was a great day,” Lipscomb coach Kristin Ryman said. “It is not just a confidence they are playing with. They are having fun.

“Of course, winning is fun, but it is neat when you see a team really embrace the game and have a good time with it. When they make mistakes they don’t fall apart.  We find a way to get past mistakes, move on and get ready for the next play. That is a sign of maturity.”

Sanders scattered six hits and struck out one against Iowa. She only gave up one extra base hit, a double.

The Lady Bisons managed only five hits against Iowa, but capitalized on four errors. They scored two runs in both the first and second innings and put the game away with six runs in the fifth.

The big at bat of the fifth inning and the game was a two-run homer  over the right center field fence by Brianne Welch, her first of the season.

Also getting hits for the Lady Bisons against Iowa were Paige Neely, Gracey Aguirre, Mimi Cartwright and Rena’ Cothron.

Neely started the Lady Bisons off on a positive note against Drake with a two-run blast over the center field fence in the first inning. She finished with a team-high three hits, including a double, and a team-high four runs batted in.

Kelsey Cartwright finished with two hits, including a double. Brittany Elmore also had two hits.

Neely, Aguirre and Begle each had a stolen base. 

In the sixth inning the Lady Bisons brought home four runs to end the game early due to the run lead rule. That inning was sparked by Kelsey Cartwright’s two-RBI double and an RBI single from pinch-hitter Haley Elliott.

“We are getting contributions from everybody which is vital right now,” Ryman said. “That is one of the reasons we are doing what we are doing.”

Anderson won her second game in as many starts. She allowed three hits and walked three while striking out one.

“I really thought that our pitching staff did a nice job of making adjustments,” Ryman said. “It is not going to be perfect. Even when you perform well there are things you can improve on.

“It was big to go from last weekend when we didn’t have a shutout to this weekend where we have two in one day. That’s a good sign.”

The Lady Bisons will put their win streak on the line Saturday against a pair of top 20 teams. At 12:30 p.m. they will face No. 14/18 Missouri. Then turn around at 3 p.m. to play host Baylor, No. 14/16 in the top 25 polls.

“We are playing loose,” Ryman said. “We are playing confident. We have to enjoy it, but we have to keep it in perspective. Saturday is going to be tough. We are going against two really good teams with a lot of history and tradition in their softball programs.

“We want to find a way to keep our players hungry. We want them to continue to play with a chip on their shoulder.  They have hit the ground running every single game. It is almost like we are pulling the reins back.”