Kelley celebrates birthday with PBC wins

Kelley celebrates birthday with PBC wins

FLORENCE, SC – Senior right-hander Shelby Kelley backed by 20 runs and 22 hits from the Francis Marion University offense celebrated her birthday with a pair of pitching wins as the Patriots swept a Peach Belt Conference doubleheader from Georgia College, Saturday evening (April 2) on Breast Cancer Awareness Day at the FMU Softball Stadium.

Junior right fielder Briana Barzola drove in three runs with a pair of hits as the Patriots rallied from a 5-0 deficit to win the opener 12-5.  Barzola then scored the winning run on a walk-off RBI single by senior first baseman Shannan Lopez to cap an 8-7 FMU win in game two.

Francis Marion improves to 29-15 overall and climbs three spots in the PBC standings to sixth with a 7-9 league mark. The Bobcats, who received votes in last week's NFCA Top 25 poll, drop to 29-13 and 6-8.

FMU will entertain Augusta University for a PBC doubleheader on Wednesday at 4 p.m.

Barzola finished the twinbill 4-for-9, while junior second baseman Taylor Brunson went 4-for-7 with three runs scored in the two games.

Kelley (15-12) entered game one in the top of the first as the Bobcats scored five runs off FMU starter Samantha Wroblewski. Kelley allowed only two singles and no runs over 6.2 innings of work as the Patriots scored 12 unanswered runs.

After the Bobcats scored their five runs in the top of the first, FMU immediately responded with seven tallies in the bottom of the first.  Both Barzola and junior center fielder Mikala Barnhart had two-run singles in the outburst.  A fielding error made six of the seven runs unearned against Georgia College righty Carly Lewis (15-7).

After the marathon first frame, the score remained 7-5 until the Patriots added three insurance runs in the fifth and two in the sixth.  Three Bobcat errors and a wild pitch aided in the three-run fifth, while Barzola and senior third baseman Sharee Blomquist had run-scoring singles in the sixth.

With the score still 7-5 in the top of the fifth, FMU sophomore Tori Gaskins, making only her second career start in left field, made a leaping catch against the left field fence to rob Julia Tindall of extra bases and to start an inning-ending double play with a Bobcat baserunner being thrown out trying to advance.

Third baseman Kristen Brooks had two hits for Georgia College in the opener and Taylor Campbell drilled a two-run double.

In game two, Kelley registered a complete game as she scattered 11 hits and fanned three.  Lewis also started game two for Georgia College, left the contest, and then re-entered and allowed the deciding run in the seventh to absorb the loss.

The two squads combined for 12 runs over the first two innings with Francis Marion holding a 7-5 advantage heading to the third.  The Bobcats knotted the score at 7-7 in the sixth. Pinch hitter Hannah Coursey delivered an RBI single back to the pitcher's circle that deflected off Kelley's glove, and six pitches later the tying run scored on a wild pitch.

In the last of the seventh, Barzola reached on a fielding error and advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt by Brunson.  After designated player Mykah Nevin was hit by a pitch, Lopez delivered a first-pitch run-scoring single to left center that plated Barzola with the winning run.

Nevin finished the second game 2-for-2 with walk, an RBI single, and a two-run homer.

Bobcat catcher Lacey Najafi went 3-for-5 with three RBIs in game two.

Francis Marion Univ. 12, Georgia College 5 (Apr 02, 2016 at Florence, SC) (Game 1)
Georgia College.....   500 000 0 -  5  6  5      (29-12, 6-7 PBC)
Francis Marion Univ. 700 032 X - 12 10  1      (28-15, 6-9 PBC)
Pitchers: Georgia College - Carly Lewis; Brooke Taylor(1); Marisa Boyette(5); Faith Flanders(6)
and Lacey Najafi. Francis Marion Univ. - Samantha Wroblewski; Shelby Kelley(1) and Chelsea Welty.
Win-Shelby Kelley (14-12)  Loss-Carly Lewis (15-6)  T-2:06
Weather: Partly Cloudy,71,Winds W @ 17
Taylor faced 3 batters in the 5th.


Francis Marion Univ. 8, Georgia College 7 (Apr 02, 2016 at Florence, SC) (Game 2)
Georgia College.....  140 002 0 -  7 11  3      (29-13, 6-8 PBC)
Francis Marion Univ. 250 000 1 -  8 12  0      (29-15, 7-9 PBC)
Pitchers: Georgia College - Carly Lewis; Marisa Boyette(5); Brooke Taylor(6) and Lacey Najafi.
Francis Marion Univ. - Shelby Kelley and Chelsea Welty.
Win-Shelby Kelley (15-12)  Loss-Carly Lewis (15-7)  T-1:45  A-128
HR FMU_SB - Mykah Nevin (5).
Weather: Clear,76,Windy,Winds W @ 23
Taylor faced 2 batters in the 4th.