BANNER ELK, N.C. --- The Lees-McRae softball team saw Hollie Crickenberger and Celeste Sheppard produce multi-hits in game two, but LMC fell in game one 11-1, before its late rally came up short in a 7-3 loss in game two to Mars Hill in nonconference play Wednesday afternoon at LMC Softball Field.
The Lions (17-13) never trailed the whole day while scoring a combined six runs in the first inning. The Bobcats (6-29) have dropped four straight after winning two of three.
Game 1 – Mars Hill 11, LMC 1 (5 innings)
MHU took advantage of consecutive walks in the opening frame, setting the table for Robyn Stanek, who cranked a three-run shot to left center.
The Lions used shaky pitching and defense from LMC to plate two more runs following a two-run double from Brittany Gibson later in the inning.
The Bobcats batting average leader, Sadie Lagle (Harmony, N.C.) boosted her average with a two-out single in the bottom of the first, but was unable to score.
MHU pushed the lead to 6-0 with an RBI single by Aleshia Peek.
LMC loaded the bases in the bottom of the second thanks to a Tori Wright (Boone, N.C.) single, a walk and hit-by-pitch.
Senior Lori Fulmer (Prosperity, S.C.) delivered a run-scoring single, but the Lions managed to turn a double play before the play ended to limit the damage.
MHU's Jamie Booze smacked a two-run shot to center in the fourth while Gibson used a RBI single in the fifth to cap off the Lions scoring.
Five different Bobcats recorded a hit while Crickenberger (Boydton, Va.) (0-1) took the loss in just two innings of work.
Game 2 – Mars Hill 7, LMC 3
The Lions scored in the first two innings before plating three in the fourth, following a solo blast from Shaundee Woosley and a two-run double from Peek.
Woosley finished the game 3-for-5.
Crickenberger and Sheppard (East Julian, N.C.) helped the load the bases in the bottom of the fourth while Crickenberger would eventually score on a wild pitch.
MHU's Lauren Saller joined the home run parade with a solo dinger before a double steal plated another run in the fifth.
LMC mounted a rally and scored two runs in the bottom of the seventh. Freshman Charlie Dutton (Monroe, Ga.) recorded the first hit of her career, setting the table for a RBI single from Valerie Hickey (Umatilla, Fla.). Lagle followed suit with a RBI single before a fielder's choice ended the game.
LMC welcomes Mount Olive in a crucial Conference Carolinas doubleheader Saturday at 1 & 3 p.m. in Banner Elk, N.C.
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