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February 07, 20201234567RHE
Win: Johnson (1-0) 7.0300114
Loss: YAKUBOWSKI (0-1) 5.0622010
RICH (LIP) 301000
WARD (LIP) 301000
Figueroa (TROY) 201000
Webb (TROY) 301000
Horne (TROY) 301000
Jenkins (TROY) 301000
Calhoun (TROY) 201000
Lively (TROY) 301100
De Leon (TROY) 201100
Lady Bisons fall short in a classic pitching duel
Friday, February 7, 2020
By Mark McGee
Lady Bisons fall short in a classic pitching duel

TROY, Ala. – The Lipscomb softball program has a reputation for always being willing to face a challenge.

Friday the Lady Bisons ended the opening day of the season in the Troy Classic 1-1 with a 2-0 loss to Troy and a 3-2 come-from-behind win over Western Kentucky earlier in the day.

“We went out day one and faced some really strong pitching,” Ryman said. “It is tough for a hitter when that is the way you start the season. Boom, we are facing two of the top mid-major pitching staffs.”

“I’m proud of us for finding a way in game one even though the scoreboard said we should have been beaten. We got clutch hits and Western made some errors. I thought we did a tremendous job of taking advantage of those errors. Megan Gray got some key outs when we needed them.”

Emily Yakubowski, making her first collegiate start kept Troy in check through five innings striking out 10 batters. In the sixth she allowed a pair of singles with no outs and was replaced in the circle by Katie Turner.

“Emily was awesome,” Ryman said. “She should take a lot of confidence from this.

“She did a tremendous job the whole game of just keeping them off balance and utilizing her pitches well. She missed a few pitches here and there, but she got away with it at times because her other pitches were working so well.”

Troy added another single off of Katie Turner and scored another run on a sac fly to right field for the victory. Both runs were credited to Yakubowski.

“We just felt like it was the right time to make a change,” Ryman said.

Yakubowski allowed six hits, all singles, and did not walk a batter. Katie Turner gave up one hit and struck out one.

“It was an incredible debut for Emily,” Ryman said. “It stinks for her to throw that well and have to take the loss.”

Leanna Johnson threw a complete game striking out 14 and walking one. She gave up three hits, a double to Presley Leebrick and singles to Olivia Ward and Kamrie Rich.

“It was a well-fought game on both sides,” Ryman said. “It was definitely an old-fashioned pitching duel. There was not a lot of hitting by either team and most of the hits were scattered.

“We have to tip our caps to Troy’s pitcher. She threw an outstanding game. I hate our strikeout were as high as they were and a lot of that is a credit to her.”

The rest of the classic is expected to be a battle as well.

“We knew going in this was going to be a tough mid-major tournament,” Ryman said. “We wanted to challenge our players right away and we certainly did that.”

Around the bases:

  • Leebrick’s first collegiate hit was a double to left field in the sixth inning against Troy.
  • Rich threw out a baserunner attempting to steal second in each game.
  • Olivia Ward stole her first base of the season in the second inning.

Up next:

The Lady Bisons will face Troy again Saturday at 4:30 followed by College of Charleston at 7.

Sunday there will be a rematch between Lipscomb and College of Charleston at 12:30.