|April 08, 2015||1||2||3||4||5||6||7||8||9||R||H||E|
|Win: Kailey Palazzolo (4-0)||2.0||1||0||0||1||0|
|Loss: YOUNG (10-11)||3.1||5||6||3||2||5|
|Sam Taylor (UTC)||5||1||1||1||0||0|
|J.J. Hamill (UTC)||5||1||1||3||0||1|
|Sarah Beth Roberts (UTC)||5||0||1||2||0||0|
|Criket Blanco (UTC)||4||0||1||1||0||0|
|Jenny Garcica (UTC)||2||2||1||0||1||0|
|Alyssa Taylor (UTC)||1||1||1||0||0||0|
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – It is not how you start, but how you finish a game.
The Lipscomb Lady Bisons have been inconsistent in putting the finishing touches on games. Wednesday night’s 7-4 loss in nine innings to Chattanooga Wednesday night at Draper Diamond at Smith Stadium was another opportunity lost.
“We have to finish games,” Lipscomb coach Kristin Ryman said. “Mentally and physically we have to finish games.
“We are kind of holding back. We have to keep attacking. We are not closing the door. We have done that this year and we have proven we can do it. We have to get back to that.”
The Lady Bisons struck first in the third inning with a run as Brittany Elmore doubled to left center to score Brianne Welch who reached on a single.
Chattanooga answered with a run in the fifth, but the Lady Bisons added a run in the bottom of the frame. Elmore, who had reached base on single to third base to open the inning stole second and then moved to third on a ground out by Mimi Cartwright. Elmore scored when Paige Neely grounded out to first base.
In the sixth the Lady Bisons extended their lead to 4-1 as Cartwright drove in Kasey Gibson with single and Elmore scored on the throw.
With two outs in the top of the seventh Chattanooga tied the game as J.J. Hamil connected for a three-run homer.
“We didn’t have to do anything different in the seventh,” Ryman said. “We just needed to keep doing what we had been doing the whole game. We were up 4-1.
“We got two runs in the bottom of the sixth. We weren’t in a tight game anymore. We are having some seventh inning struggles. You have to execute, trust yourself and make plays.”
Chattanooga added three more runs in the ninth highlighted by a two-run double by Sarah Beth Roberts down the right field line.
The Lady Bisons out-hit Chattanooga 10 to 6. But three errors proved costly to the Purple and Gold cause.
Elmore led the way offensively with a game-high two hits. Elmore, Neely and Williams each had a double.
Tanner Sanders started for the Lady Bisons. She pitched 5.2 innings and allowed one run, unearned, on one hit. She struck out four and walked two.
“Tanner threw a great game,” Ryman said. “She did everything we needed her to do.”
Kelly Young, 10-11, threw the final 3.1 innings. She scattered five hits and gave up six runs, three earned. She struck out five and did not walk a batter.
“When we made the pitching change I thought Kelly came in and did a great job right off the bat,” Ryman said. “She got us out of a jam right away in the sixth.
“In the seventh we make a leadoff error. We have to do a better job in the sixth and seventh innings of making plays. If we don’t take care of the ball we are hurting ourselves. We gave up a double right after that but she rebounds and struck the next two out. Then she gave up the big hit.”
The Lady Bisons slip to 19-21 overall. Chattanooga, from the Southern Conference, is 25-8 overall.
- All nine of the starting players in the Lipscomb batting order connected for at least one hit.
- Only one Lipscomb batter struck out.
- Neely has 15 doubles for the season, a new single-season career high.
- Elmore stole her 35th base of the season. She is one short of tying her all-time career high for a season. She stole 36 in 2013.
The Lady Bisons will hold a “Celebration of 20 Years of Lipscomb Softball” this weekend with approximately 50 former players scheduled to attend along with former coaches.
Players will be recognized during both games.
The Lady Bisons will be facing North Florida in a key Atlantic Sun series. Saturday’s doubleheader begins at 1. A single game is scheduled for Sunday at 1.