Tusculum, LMU split SAC softball doubleheader

Tusculum, LMU split SAC softball doubleheader

GREENEVILLE, Tenn. --- Sammie West went 3-for-6 with three RBI on the day to lead the Tusculum softball team to a South Atlantic Conference split against visiting Lincoln Memorial Wednesday afternoon at Red Edmonds Field

The Pioneers (19-15, 5-3 SAC) won the first game 6-5 behind the complete-game pitching performance of Taylor Plemons, while the Railsplitters (18-13, 2-6 SAC) put together a pair of six-run frames to win the night-cap 12-1 in five innings.

Tusculum returns to action on Saturday when they host Coker for a SAC doubleheader beginning at 3 p.m.

Game 1: Tusculum 6, Lincoln Memorial 5

West went 2-for-3 with two runs scored and drove in a pair of RBI with her two-run double as the Pioneers won the opener 6-5.

Plemons (10-7) went the distance as she allowed five hits, five unearned runs, didn't walk a batter and recorded three strikeouts in her 85-pitch performance.

Tusculum scored the first run of the game when West led off with her second triple of the season and later scored on a failed pick-off attempt at third base.

LMU answered with three runs in the top of the second inning as the Railsplitters thanks to one hit, a hit batter and one TC error.  LMU was credited with three sacrifice bunts and Dakotah Fraley's sacrifice fly as the visitors led 3-1.

TC answered with a run in the third on Taylor Johnson's RBI single and regained the lead in the fourth with West's two-run double and Johnson followed with a RBI base hit as the Pioneers led 5-3.

LMU tied the game with two unearned runs in the fifth inning as the Railsplitters recorded three hits, including Kelsie Hocutt's infield hit to drive in the tying run.

Tusculum broke the tie in the fifth inning, when Rachel Wisener hit a one-out single, moved to second on a walk.  Wisener advanced to third on Taylor Battle's bunt single, but on the throw to first, there was an errant catch allowing TC to plate the go-ahead run.

Meanwhile, Plemons retired the final eight batters of the game, including Ty-Kella Goins deep fly out to center field which was caught on the warning track for the final out of the contest.

Tusculum finished the game with eight hits, while LMU tallied five hits.  Holcutt, who relieved LMU starter Brianna Taylor in the fifth inning, suffered the loss (0-1).

Game 2: Lincoln Memorial 12, Tusculum 1 (5 innings)

Lincoln Memorial pounded out 14 hits and got a stellar complete-game pitching performance from Justice Smith as LMU salvaged a 12-1 victory in the second game.

All nine LMU starters scored a run, including two each from Ty-Kella Goins, BriAnna Schrimpf and Jacie Pittman.  Pittman and Allie Jones also finished with three hits apiece while Teddi Collins drove in a team-best three RBI.

LMU scored four runs before recording the first out of the game in the first inning as TC starter Eliza Davis was unable to get an out with the big hit of the frame coming on Ashlea Hunter's two-run triple down the right field line.  LMU sent 12 batters to the plate as the visitors took a 6-0 lead.

LMU tacked on six more runs in the fourth inning as 11 Railsplitters went to the dish as Jennifer Moose accounted for a two-run single and Collins added a two-run double, her fourth of the season.

Smith did not allow a hit until the fourth inning when Johnson broke up her no-hit bid with a lined single to right.

Tusculum broke up Smith's shutout bid in the fifth as Morgan Mahaffey reached on a walk and scored from first on West's third extra base hit of the day, a two-out double to the gap in right center, her 12th of the season.

Smith allowed just two hits, one run, two walks and posted five strikeouts to improve to 8-6 on the season.