Offense leads King to sweep of Barton

WILSON, N.C. – The King University softball team rebounded from Saturday's losses to sweep Barton College on Sunday. The Tornado combined for 23 hits and 16 runs to take both games from the Bulldogs. King took game one 5-3 before cruising to an 11-3 victory in the second game.

Fallon Thomas sparked a two-out rally in the first inning with a single and moved to second on a passed ball. She game in to score on a Cassie Ringstaff single through the left side to get King on the scoreboard. Barton threatened in the bottom half of the inning as they loaded the bases, but Hannah Light escaped the jam, and left the bases loaded.

King tacked on a run in the second inning as Octavia Lewis-Rand drove in Allie Spell who walked to lead off the inning.

The Bulldogs cut the deficit in half in the second inning before they broke through in the fourth. With two runners on, Crystal Britton ripped a triple to left field, scoring both runners and giving Barton a 3-2 lead.

However, King had an answer in the sixth inning, as Macy Shupe started a rally with a one-out single. After she stole second, Spell laced a single to right field to score Shupe and even the score at three. Following an infield single by Stephanie Rodriguez, Christina Melcher came up with the big hit for the Tornado. She crushed the first pitch she saw to center field for a triple that scored Rodriguez and pinch runner Aubrey Hutt, giving King a 5-3 advantage.

Light then shut down the Bulldog offense, only facing the minimum six batters over the final two frames. With the complete game victory, Light moves to 7-9 on the season. In the game she struck out six Bulldog hitters, and allowed three runs on seven hits. Melcher, Thomas and Ringstaff paced the Tornado offense with two hits apiece while Melcher drove in two runs.

The King (11-18, 6-2 CC) offense stayed hot in the second game as Rodriguez drew a bases loaded walk in the second inning to give the Tornado and early 1-0 lead. The Tornado broke the game open with a seven-run third inning. Shupe had a run scoring single, before Spell followed with a two-RBI single up the middle and Tori McComas crushed a two-run double to left center. Melcher capped the frame with a two-run home run to center field, giving King a commanding 8-0 lead.

Barton (4-16, 1-9 CC) tallied three runs in the fourth inning, but King answered with three more runs in the seventh. Melcher ripped a double down the left field line to score two, and Thomas drove in King's 11th on single down the left field line. Light came in to pitch the final inning, and close out the 11-3 victory.

Morgan White tossed six innings, and earned her fourth win of the season after allowing three runs and scattering nine hits. Smith lead the Tornado offense with three hits in four at bats while Melcher drove in a team-high four runs on two hits. Thomas, Shupe and McComas all recorded two hits for the Tornado.

King will be in action again on Tuesday when they play a doubleheader at Georgia Southwestern. First pitch is scheduled for 5:00 p.m. from Americus, Ga.