Covenant Softball Earns Doubleheader Split At LaGrange

Saturday, March 10, 2018 - by Andrew Mindeman
Carlin Labuzan produced a go-ahead, two-run double in the seventh inning of game two that gave the Covenant softball team a 7-5 victory and a doubleheader split at LaGrange on Saturday. LaGrange took game one, 7-2, in the USA South twin-bill.

The game one loss for Covenant (12-12, 4-2 USA South) snapped a four-game win streak. The game two victory for the Lady Scots gave LaGrange (7-13, 5-1 USA South) its first conference loss of the year.

GAME TWO: Covenant 7, LaGrange 5

After dropping game one, Covenant scored runs in each of the first three innings, but it took a Labuzan two-out, two-run double in the seventh to break a 5-5 tie and give the Lady Scots a 7-5 victory.

Covenant grabbed a 3-0 lead after two-and-a-half innings after scoring single runs in each of the first three frames. Shelby Ralston and Shade Epes had sacrifice flies in the first and second innings, respectively. In the third, Covenant took advantage of a two-out LaGrange error that enabled Shannon Schmitt to score and make it 3-0.

LaGrange scored twice in its half of the third and then tied the game at 3-3 in the fifth on a Riley Densmore RBI single. Covenant regained the lead with two runs in the sixth as LaGrange committed another error that allowed Madalyn Ames to score, before a Schmitt RBI bunt single scored Shade Epes to make it 5-3. However, the host Panthers knotted the score again in the bottom of the sixth with a pair of RBI ground outs.

In the seventh, Covenant put runners on second and third with two away for Labuzan. The junior got her hit to land in the outfield for a double that plated both Epes and Ames to give Covenant a 7-5 lead.

Joni Johnson then worked around a two-out single in the home half of the seventh to seal the win and the doubleheader split.

Johnson (2-0) got the win as she threw the final two innings in relief and allowed just one hit. Carsyn Stone went five innings and gave up three earned runs on eight hits. Epes, Erika Mast, and Ames all had two hits apiece for the Lady Scots, who out-hit LaGrange 10-9.

Emily Cauldwell (5-6) picked up the loss for LaGrange in her relief appearance. Madison Martin and Brittany Todd had two hits each for the Panthers.

GAME ONE: LaGrange 7, Covenant 2

LaGrange scored seven runs between the fourth and sixth innings to pull away for a 7-2 victory in game one of the doubleheader.

Covenant took a 2-0 lead in the top of the third when Epes singled home Faith Manning before Labuzan delivered an RBI single that plated Madyson Gibbins.

But LaGrange would get to Covenant pitching starting in the fourth inning. Todd hit a two-run homer to tie the game in the fourth, then three RBI doubles from Emily Barrs, Martin, and Taylor Tallant in the fifth gave the Panthers a 5-2 lead. In the sixth, Todd was at it again as she drove in two runs with her double to make it 7-2.

After the third inning, Covenant did not put a runner in scoring position. Cauldwell (5-5) got the win for LaGrange going all seven innings and allowing one earned run on seven hits.

Labuzan finished 2-for-4 for Covenant, while Epes, Schmitt, Kirsten Aanensen, Manning, and Gibbins all had one hit. Tyler Epes (1-5) got the loss in relief for the Lady Scots. Sarah Huskey allowed two runs on five hits with four strikeouts in her start.

Covenant continues its road trip on Tuesday at Piedmont for a pair of USA South games. Game one is set for 2 p.m.

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