BELMONT, N.C. – The Carson-Newman Lady Eagles hammered out 23 hits and 15 runs to sweep a doubleheader from Belmont Abbey College on Sunday afternoon in Belmont, N.C. C-N beat the Crusaders, 8-0 in five innings in Game 1 and cruised in Game 2, 7-2.
The Lady Eagles held the Crusaders without a run until the final inning of the day while racking up runs in bunches to improves to 17-9 on the year. BAC falls to 6-16.
In the opener, the Eagles pieced together four hits to score twice in the top of the first, all coming after the first two batters were retired. Bri Shoemake and Mary Shealy recorded back-to-back doubles, with Shealy driving in Shoemake for the game's first run. A single up the middle by Caitlyn Lance moved Shealy to third, and a Sara Kelley single to left center brought home Shealy.
That was all of the scoring until the fourth when Carson-Newman plated six runs, three coming on a homer by Shoemake, to move the lead to 8-0. Down to its final three outs in the fifth, and needing to score a run to keep the game alive, Emma Peek reached on a one out pinch hit single down the leftfield line. After a flyout, Savannah Carpenter lined a single down the rightfield line to move Peek to second. A walk to Kelly Schweizer loaded the bases, but the game ended when Schweizer was forced at second to end the game.
Shealy earned the win in the circle, as she worked the first four innings and then returned to get the final out of the game as her final line read four and one-thirds innings, allowing just two hits and striking out four. She also walked one. Nikki Faust was tagged with the loss after yielding two runs on six hits in three and one-thirds innings, fanning two and walking one.
Four different Crusaders had one hit apiece. Carson-Newman totaled 11 hits as Shoemake fell just a triple short of hitting for the cycle, going three for three with three RBI.
In the second game, the Eagles struck first in the top of the third on an RBI single by Cassie Elliott. The game remained 1-0 until the fifth when Shoemake drilled a solo homer to left to increase the lead to 2-0. One inning later, Kelley made it 4-0 with a two-run shot to leftcenter, and the Eagles blew the game open in the seventh as they took advantage of two Crusader errors to score three runs, and it could have been more but Savannah Carpenter ran down a long fly ball from Kelley, catching the ball with her back to the field, and throwing back to the infield to double up Allyssa King at second.
The Abbey finally got on the board in the bottom of the seventh as it scored twice. Shanie McConnell led off with a single to right and moved to second when Brittany Southard's grounder was bobbled by the shortstop and McConnell reached the bag just before the ball did. Carpenter followed with a single to center, and McConnell scored when the ball was misplayed to score the first Abbey run. Schweizer brought home Brittany Southard when she beat out an infield single to cut the deficit to 7-2. Three-straight force-outs ended the game.
Madison Burnett picked up the win as she tossed three scoreless innings, allowing just one hit, striking out three and walking two. Shealy was credited with the save after giving up two unearned runs on four hits in the final four innings. Emily Self took the loss after giving up seven runs, five earned, on 12 hits in seven innings. She struck out three and walked one.
Five different Crusaders had one hit apiece, while Shoemake and Cassidy Skeen both had three hits for the Eagles, which totaled 12.
Carson-Newman returns to action on Wednesday against Lincoln Memorial in Harrogate, Tenn. First pitch is at 2 p.m.