BURLINGTON, N.C. – With each team playing their third game of the day, third seed University of Mount Olive outlasted seventh seed King University to stay alive in the Conference Carolinas Softball Tournament. The Trojans scored four runs in the first two innings and held on for the 6-3 victory.
FINAL SCORE: Mount Olive 6; King 3
LOCATION: Springwood Park; Burlington, N.C.
RECORDS: King 19-31; Mount Olive 33-19
- Julie Hodges started for Mount Olive in the circle and tossed three and one-thirds innings, allowing three runs, two earned on five hits.
- She was relieved by Madison Johnston who threw the final three and two-thirds innings, earning her 17th win of the season. She only allowed three hits.
- For King, Hayley Smothers tossed all six innings, allowing six runs, five earned on 12 hits.
- The top three hitters in the Trojan offense led the way as Kelsey Akers went 3-for-4 and scored three times from the leadoff spot.
- Savannah Becker followed, going 2-for-4 with two runs batted in while Kayla Allen went 2-for-3 and drove in two.
- For King it was Hannah Smith and Amber Walker that led the way with two hits each. Smith went 2-for-3 while Walker went 2-for-3 with two runs scored and her second home run of the season.
HOW IT HAPPENED
- Akers got the Mount Olive offense going in the first inning with a leadoff single and Allen later singled up the middle, scoring Akers to give the Trojans a 1-0 advantage.
- Walker then pulled King back even when she laced a home run to left field to start the top of the second inning.
- However, the Trojans answered with three runs on four hits in the bottom of the inning. Brooke Kamphuis drove in the first run with a single up the middle before Becker singled to score Akers and Allen drove in Becker with single to left center, giving Mount Olive a 4-1 lead.
- King cut into the deficit again in the fourth, but could have plated more than the two runs the scored. Jennifer Kern and Walker started the inning with back-to-back singles.
- Smothers then singled up the middle and Kern scored on an error. Kay Brokering walked to load the bases, and Hannah Devotie pulled King within 4-3 with a single that scored Walker.
- However, Mount Olive got the final out of the inning, leaving the bases loaded as they held the advantage.
- The Trojans added one run in the bottom of the fourth on a Becker single that scored Akers who singled earlier in the frame.
- Akers tacked on an insurance run for Mount Olive in the sixth when she drove in Callie Ferrell, who singled to start the inning, with an infield single.
- That was all Johnston needed as she got the final three outs to give Mount Olive the 6-3 win.
- Mount Olive will take on top seed Limestone College in an elimination game at 12:00 p.m. The winner will advance to take on No. 2 seed Pfeiffer in the championship.
- King is eliminated from the Conference Carolinas Tournament.