Lady Eagles pick up first SAC win in split at LMU

HARROGATE, TN -- The LMU Lady Railsplitters' softball team split a doubleheader on Wednesday afternoon with the Carson-Newman College Lady Eagles in their South Atlantic Conference home opener. Lincoln Memorial dropped the first game 6-4, and recovered to take a 6-4 victory in the finale.

With the split, the Lady Railsplitters move to 10-17 overall on the season and 2-2 in the SAC. The Lady Eagles go to 18-10 and 1-3 in the South Atlantic Conference.

Game One- Carson-Newman-6 Lincoln Memorial-4

Bri Shoemake and Caitlyn Lance combined for five hits and four RBIs while pitcher Mary Shealy tossed a complete game, allowing seven hits and four runs, to lead the Lady Eagles past LMU in the opener of the doubleheader.

Meghan LaFevor was saddled with the loss in the contest as she threw two and a third of an inning in the start, surrendering seven hits and five earned runs. Amanda Snow had a strong day at the plate as she went 3-4 at the dish and drove in a run. The Lady Railsplitters were outhit 12-7 in the opener.

After setting the Lady Eagles down in order in the top of the first, LMU got on the board in the bottom of that frame. Brianna Mulkey reached on a walk, stole second and advanced to third on a muffed throw from the infield. Amanda Snow singled her home two batters later to put the Lady Railsplitters on top, 1-0.

A homerun by Sara Kelley in the top of the second squared the game at one apiece but the Lady Railsplitters answered in the bottom of that stanza. Cierra Mudd led off with a double and advanced to third on a wild pitch where she scored on Kelly Dreier's fielder's choice, narrowly beating the throw home.

The Lady Eagles took command of the board in the top of the third as they rallied for four runs in that frame. Consecutive singles by Kim Whaley, Cassidy Skeen and Shelby Robertson loaded the bases with one out. Bri Shoemake drove two runs home with a double over the outstretched arm of Brianna Mulkey in center. Mary Shealy drove another home with a single and Caitlyn Lance notched another run with a single to put Carson-Newman on top 5-2.

Bridget Eicher drilled an RBI double and Sarah Walz slapped an RBI single in the bottom of the third to get two of those runs back and cut the deficit to 5-4 after three innings.

After three scoreless innings, Carson-Newman added another run in the top of the seventh with another RBI from Caitlyn Lance, as she slapped a double down the left field line.

A ground out, a fly out and a strikeout ended the contest as the Lady Railsplitters went down in order in the bottom of the seventh to drop the opener, 6-4.

Game Two- Lincoln Memorial-6 Carson-Newman-4

Cierra Mudd pounded out four RBIs and Amanda Snow added two hits and two RBIs to lead the Lady Railsplitters to a decisive 6-4 victory in game two. Meghan LaFevor picked up the win, improving to 5-7 on the year, as she limited the Lady Eagles to three runs in five and a third of an inning despite allowing nine hits. Amanda Snow and Cierra Mudd combined for an inning and a third in relief, surrendering only one run to shut the door on Carson-Newman.

The Lady Railsplitters put runners on second and third with no outs in the bottom of the first after a leadoff triple from Brianna Mulkey and a single, stolen base combo by Meghan LaFevor. The Lady Eagles held LMU scoreless in that frame after a groundout and a double play.

LMU rebounded in the bottom of the second by unleashing a five run bulge. Bridget Eicher got things started with a double to center field and Taylor McGinnis reached on an error in the next at bat. Following a ground out, Cierra Mudd slammed a three-run homerun to put LMU on top 3-0. Kelly Dreier got another rally started as she notched a two-out single two batters later. An error and a walk loaded the bases and Amanda Snow capitalized with a two RBI single to put the Lady Railsplitters on top 5-0 after two.

Lincoln Memorial University added another run in the bottom of the third as Taylor McGinnins led off with a double to right field and advanced to third on a ground out. Cierra Mudd took advantage as she plated McGinnis with an RBI single in the next at-bat to give the Lady Railsplitters a commanding 6-0 lead.

Jessica Morgan's RBI single in the top of the fourth put the Lady Eagles on the board as they cut the deficit to 6-1 in that frame. In the top of the fourth, Carson-Newman eeked closer with three runs on four hits, highlighted by Sara Kelley's two RBI single and Bri Shoemake's RBI single.

The Lady Railsplitters held sway as they limited the Lady Eagles to only three baserunners and two hits in the final two frames as they took the split with a 6-4 win at Dorothy Neely Field.

The Lady Eagles return to action on Saturday against Wingate. C-N hosts the Bulldogs at 1 p.m. at the Lady Eagle Softball Complex.