April 01, 20171234567RHE
Win: JORDAN (17-4) 7.041136
Loss: MORA (3-2) 7.082112
DEVAULT (LIP) 402100
BREWER (LIP) 302100
RAGAN (JU) 301000
KURSCH (JU) 301100
LARRABEE (JU) 201000
JONES (JU) 301000
April 01, 20171234567RHE
Win: THOMAS (9-5) 7.043227
Loss: BILODEAU (6-6) 6.174222
DEVAULT (LIP) 302100
McCOURT (JU) 411100
KURSCH (JU) 311101
BUSS (JU) 301000
HODSKINS (JU) 311000
Softball sweeps ASUN doubleheader at Jacksonville
Saturday, April 1, 2017
By Mark McGee
Softball sweeps ASUN doubleheader at Jacksonville

JACKSONVILLE, Fla.  – The Lipscomb Lady Bisons earned their first ASUN Conference doubleheader sweep of the season at Jacksonville.

Lipscomb took game one 2-1 and then closed out the day with a 4-3 win at the Pruitt Softball Complex. Lipscomb is 27-9, 3-2 in the conference. Jacksonville is 21-16, 1-4 in the ASUN.

“There were a lot of moments where I am not sure we played our best or played our brand of softball,” Lipscomb coach Kristin Ryman said. “But we took advantage of some mistakes they made and we had a few timely hits to score first in both games and found a way to hang on at the end.

“Overall, it was not the perfect way for the games to go for us. But both times we found ways to win.”

The final game of the series is scheduled for Sunday at 11 a.m. The game can be seen live on ESPN3.

The Lady Bisons struck first in game two with two runs in the first inning. Kasey Gibson opened with a single to center. Caitlin Plocheck doubled to right center to bring in Gibson. Sarah Higgins singled down the right field line moving Plocheck to third. Hannah DeVault singled to center field to score Plocheck.

Jacksonville answered with a two-out solo home run from Bethany Kursch in the second inning.

In the third the Dolphins tied the game at 2-2 and took a 3-2 lead with a run in the sixth.

Lipscomb came back in the top of the seventh with a pair of runs. With one out Peyton Ward singled down the left field line. Destinee Brewer reached base on a fielding error by the shortstop and Ward scored on the throw. Brewer scored the final run for Lipscomb on a passed ball.

McCarley Thomas, 9-5, went the distance for the Lady Bisons. She allowed four hits and only two of the runs were earned. She struck out seven and walked two.

Alyssa Bilodeau, 6-6, took the loss. She scattered seven hits and two of the runs she allowed were earned.  She struck out two and walked two.

Madison Ragan pitched two-thirds of an inning to close out the game. She struck out both batters she faced.

In game one the Lady Bisons also scored in the first inning. DeVault singled up the middle to drive in Abby Fenichel.

Lipscomb added another run in the fourth inning on a single by Brewer up the middle to score Ward.

Jacksonville scored its only run in the fourth.

“Scoring first is really important, especially on the road,” Ryman said. “I think it sets the tone right off of the bat.

“Once we do strike first we have to find a way to keep the pressure on the rest of the game. I think at times we put our foot off the gas in the middle innings. I would like to see us play the entire game the way we started both of them.”

Both teams showed a strong level of gritty play.

“Jacksonville is a team that is not going to go away,” Ryman said. “They have always been that kind of team.

“I think our girls figured that out very quickly. Jacksonville did what we do a lot of times. They were just chipping away and found a way to get back in it.”

Mandy Jordan, 17-4, pitched a complete game win for Lipscomb. She gave up four hits, struck out six and walked three.

Seana Mora, 3-2, was the loser for Jacksonville. The Lady Bisons connected for eight hits against her. She struck out two, walked one and hit one batter.

“Both games were extremely close and could have gone either way,” Ryman said. “Sunday we would like to go out and strike first again, but we also have to keep it going throughout the game and not have moments when we are stalled.

“We want to do a better job of creating situations for ourselves and finding ways to string together quality at bats. We want to put together bigger innings throughout the game.”

Scorebook notes:

  • Brewer and DeVault each had two hits in game one.
  • DeVault also collected two hits in game two.
  • In game two Plocheck slammed her 12th double of the season and DeVault added her fourth.
  • Plocheck has tied her career season high for doubles set during the 2016 season.
  • DeVault is third on the team with eight multi-hit games.
  • Plocheck has the longest active hitting streak on the team with six straight games with a least one hit.
  • Gibson has the longest active streak for reaching base in a game with 10.
  • Ward stole her 17th base of the season in game one.