April 29, 2017123456RHE
Kennesaw State2014029101
Lipscomb010000163
PitchingIPHRERBBSO
Win: Cutting (16-9) 5.061004
Loss: MANDY JORDAN (22-8) 3.065511
BattingABRHRBIBBHR
Thomason (KSU) 422000
Sutter (KSU) 422301
SARAH HIGGINS (LIP) 312000
April 29, 20171234567RHE
Kennesaw State0001100251
Lipscomb0000000030
PitchingIPHRERBBSO
Win: Green (5-1) 7.030039
Loss: MCCARLEY THOMAS (11-7) 7.052222
BattingABRHRBIBBHR
Sutter (KSU) 312201
KASEY GIBSON (LIP) 401000
ABBY FENICHEL (LIP) 201010
DESTINEE BREWER (LIP) 301000
"Senior Day" joy dampened by struggles on the field
Saturday, April 29, 2017
By Mark McGee

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Long after the crowd was gone Lipscomb pitcher Mandy Jordan and pitching coach Megan Rhodes Smith sat in the left field grass talking as the mist from the sprinklers watering the infield blew their way.

It was a scene that was emotional at times and said much about the day for the Lady Bisons without a word being said.

It was “Senior Day” for Lipscomb softball. While it was joyful celebration there was little else for the Lady Bisons to laugh about as they dropped an ASUN Conference doubleheader to Kennesaw State at Draper Diamond at Smith Stadium.

“There was a lot going on,” Lipscomb coach Kristin Ryman said. “We are in the middle of finals. It was Senior Day. There was a lot of emotion, but we still have to find a way to go out, do our job and execute.

“Kennesaw State is a great team. They have a great hitting team. They are going to put the pressure on.”

Lipscomb will be out to prevent a sweep of the series by the Owls with a 2 p.m. game Sunday. It is the final regular season home appearance for the Lady Bisons.

In the opening game Jordan struggled and the rest of her teammates had their moments as well losing 9-1 in six innings due to the run rule lead. In game two the Lady Bisons dropped a 2-0 decision despite threatening in the sixth and seventh innings.

“Game one got away from us in a hurry,” Ryman said. “The game didn’t start the way we wanted it to and we had to rebound quickly. But we never found a way to catch back up.”

Lipscomb is 34-15 overall, 7-7 in the ASUN. Kennesaw State is 34-16 overall, 10-6 in the conference. With the wins the Owls have qualified for the ASUN Tournament.

It was an atypical game for Jordan, 22-8, the leading pitcher in a number of categories in the ASUN. In three innings she scattered six hits and gave up five runs, all earned. She walked one and struck out one.

“We are not used to Mandy not being sharp,” Ryman said. “Their hitters took advantage of that. She left a lot of pitches over the middle and a lot of her stuff was flat.

“But defensively we made several mistakes behind her. Offensively, we didn’t look like we were in synch. We made a lot of mental mistakes in game one. We have to do a better job of creating our opportunities.”

Chloe Yeager made only her fifth appearance in the circle this season, her first in an ASUN game. She gave up four hits and four runs, two earned in three innings. She walked four and struck out one.

Alley Cutting, 16-9, was the winning pitcher. She gave up six hits and one run, unearned, in five innings. She struck out four and did not walk a batter.

Logan Viers pitched the final inning of game one and did not allow a run or a hit.

In the nightcap Kasey Gibson singled in the sixth inning for the first hit of the game for Lipscomb. Kennesaw State pitcher Abigail Green, 5-1, allowed only three hits. She walked three and struck out nine.

McCarley Thomas, 11-7, went the distance for the Lady Bisons. She gave up five hits and two earned runs. She struck out two, walked two and hit two batters.

“I thought McCarley did a nice job of keeping us in the game,” Ryman said. “In the last inning we had two runners on. It was good to see her back on the forward climb.”

Ryman is confident her team can rebound.

“Kennesaw State has a great team and we have a great team too,” Ryman said. “I don’t think our players doubt that we are.

“We have to get back to us Sunday. We have to get back to attacking. We can’t go up and guess as hitters. We have to see the pitch and attack it. We just need to react. We have to be the aggressor.”

Scorebook notes:

  • Yeager gave up her first runs of the season. She had pitched 10.2 scoreless innings heading into the series with the Owls.
  • The one strikeout by Jordan was her lowest number of the season.
  • Kasey Gibson, Abby Fenichel and Destinee Brewer each had a hit for Lipscomb in game two.
  • This was the fifth time the Lady Bisons have been shutout this season, the fourth time in an ASUN game.
  • Kasey Gibson sang the "National Anthem".
  • Sarah Higgins had two hits in game one.