NASHVILLE, Tenn. – It was the day of the long ball. And sometimes it was the really long ball.
The Lipscomb Lady Bison used extra base hits to drive in seven of their runs in an 8-0 win over Eastern Illinois to close out the first day of the Purple and Gold Challenge Friday at Draper Diamond at Smith Stadium.
The game was called after five innings due to the run rule. The Lady Bisons are 12-5. Eastern Illinois slips to 8-7.
Earlier in the day Valparaiso, 5-0, beat Stony Brook, 1-5. by a score of 4-1.
Abby Fenichel started things off in the second with a solo home run to left center with one out. With the bases loaded on a single and two walks with two outs Kasey Gibson pounded a double to right center to clear the bases.
“Kasey got the big hit,” Ryman said. “She has just been clutch for us this year whether it has been getting on base or driving runners in. She is a slapper, but she one of our top RBI people.
“She is steady. We have talked about that with her. Emotionally, she doesn’t get too high or too low. She keeps everything in perspective. She is a very good leadoff .Even if she doesn’t get on base she comes back in and gives us good feedback.”
After scoring the four runs in the second, the Lady Bisons added three more runs as Hannah DeVault blasted a two-RBI homer to left field and Chloe Yeager followed with a solo shot down the left field line.
“What a bomb by Hannah.” Ryman said. “And then Chloe comes right back to give us back-to-back homers.
“The freshman bring so much to the table. That is why there is excitement about that group. There is an exciting future for them. They are playing major roles for us. They are making an impact right now.”
In the fifth Lipscomb pushed across the deciding run as Abby White singled to right field and then stole second base. Khayla Green reached base on an error by the third baseman and White scored on the play.
Mandy Jordan, 8-2, struck out seven, walked one and allowed only three hits.
“We played really good defense,” Ryman said. “Mandy wasn’t hitting her spots and she told us she wasn’t. Our outfielders took some doubles and triples away. They were reading and reacting to the line drives out there. Kasey and Khayla both made some big plays.”
Michelle Rogers, 6-3, took the loss. She scattered five hits and gave up six runs, all earned. She struck out three and walked two.
Jessica Wireman closed out the game. In two innings she gave up four hits and two runs, one earned. She struck out four and walked one.
“Rogers is a good pitcher for them,” Ryman said. “I thought we did a very good job early in the game making adjustments and we haven’t always been great at that.
“We have been working harder at it this year. We have been able to make adjustments in game this season quicker than we have in the past.”
- Jordan has four shutouts this season.
- White had a season and career high three hits to lead the game.
- Gibson drove in a season-high three runs, her fourth multiple-RBI game of the season. It was her first double of the season. She has already hit three triples.
- Fenichel and Gibson lead the team with six-game hitting streaks. It is the longest streak of the season for each player.
- DeVault, Caitlin Plocheck and Yeager each have two home runs.
- Gibson has moved into the team RBI lead with 12.
Next up: Lipscomb plays Valparaiso at 12:30 Saturday and Stony Brook at 3.
Stony Brook and Eastern Illinois open the day at 10 a.m. Valparaiso and Eastern Illinois play the final game of the day at 5:30.
Sunday Valparaiso and Stony Brook are scheduled for 10 a.m. Eastern Illinois and Lipscomb have a rematch at 12:30.