Patriots split softball twinbill with Crusaders

Patriots split softball twinbill with Crusaders

FLORENCE, SC – Freshman left-hander Kaitlin Munda pitched a one-hitter and junior catcher Shannan Lopez drove in two runs as Francis Marion University edged North Greenville University 2-1, and the Patriots and Crusaders split Wednesday's (March 25) non-conference softball doubleheader.  North Greenville (14-12) rallied for five runs in the top of the seventh inning to claim a 9-6 victory in game two.

The Patriots (18-12) will play their next 14 contests on the road beginning with a Peach Belt Conference twinbill at eighth-ranked Georgia College on Saturday at noon.

Munda needed only 86 pitches to notch her eighth win of the season against six defeats.  She struck out two and the lone hit she surrendered was a line-drive single to center with no outs in the sixth inning.

North Greenville second baseman Haley Gray led off the game with an eight-pitch walk, Munda's only free pass of the game.  Gray moved to third base on a pair of groundouts and then scored on a wild pitch.

FMU knotted the contest at 1-1 in the bottom of the first when Lopez doubled down the right field line scoring Mikala Barnhart, who had led off with an infield single.

Lopez also accounted for the winning tally in the third frame.  Junior shortstop Sharee Blomquist singled to center, stole second base, and moved to third on an infield single by sophomore left fielder Briana Barzola.  After Barzola took second on defensive indifference, Lopez grounded out to the pitcher with Blomquist crossing home plate ahead of the throw from first.

Both Barnhart and Barzola went 2-for-3 in the opener.

North Greenville righty Cassi Carpenter (6-5) was tagged with the game-one loss despite only allowing seven hits and the two runs.  She fanned one batter and walked two.

In the second contest, a two-out, two-run triple by Barzola in the bottom of the sixth broke a 4-4 deadlock and lifted Francis Marion to a 6-4 advantage.  However, North Greenville plated five runs in the top of the seventh, all with two outs, to rally for the win. One run scored on a bases-loaded walk, two came home on a throwing error, and the final two on a single by designated player Christie Reilly.  Four of the runs were unearned.

Barzola was 3-for-4 in game two, while Barnhart posted her second 2-for-3 effort of the afternoon.  FMU starting pitcher Katie Carnes dove in one run with an RBI single, while sophomore right fielder Danielle Myers plated another run with a sacrifice fly.

North Greenville led 3-1 after four innings, but FMU rallied with three runs in the last of the fifth to take a 4-3 lead.  The Crusaders tied the game at 4-4 with a single tally in the top of the sixth setting the stage for Barzola's hit and the Crusaders' subsequent comeback.

Junior righty Shelby Kelley (4-5) absorbed the loss in relief of Carnes.  North Greenville freshman righty Emily Murphy (1-0) picked up her first collegiate win with 1.1 scoreless innings of work.

Reilly finished the second game 2-for-3 with three RBIs.

Francis Marion Univ. 2, North Greenville U 1 (Mar 25, 2015 at Florence, SC) (Game 1)
North Greenville U.. 100 000 0 -  1  1  0      (13-12)
Francis Marion Univ. 101 000 X -  2  7  0      (18-11)
Pitchers: North Greenville U - C. Carpenter and Morgan Roach. Francis Marion Univ. -
Kaitlin Munda and Shannan Lopez.
Win-Kaitlin Munda(8-6)  Loss-C. Carpenter(6-5)  T-1:41
Weather: Cloudy, 60, Winds ENE @ 13 mph


North Greenville U 9, Francis Marion Univ. 6 (Mar 25, 2015 at Florence, SC) (Game 2)
North Greenville U.. 012 001 5 -  9  7  4      (14-12)
Francis Marion Univ. 100 032 0 -  6  7  2      (18-12)
Pitchers: North Greenville U - Christene Phillips; Emily Murphy(6) and Taylor Wilson.
Francis Marion Univ. - Katie Carnes; Shelby Kelley(6) and Shannan Lopez; Mykah Nevin;
Taylor Barrineau.
Win-Emily Murphy(1-0)  Loss-Shelby Kelley(4-5)  T-2:25  A-63
Weather: Cloudy, 71, Winds ESE @ 13 mph
Carnes faced 2 batters in the 6th.