The University of the Cumberlands (UC) Patriot softball team was back on their home field on Wednesday April 9th, as they prepared to take on Mid-South Conference (MSC) rival Campbellsville University (CU). This was a big day for UC as they were up against one of the best teams in their conference. The Patriots lived up to the challenge as they took the first game from the Tigers with a final score of 1-0. Unfortunately, the second game didn't go as well and UC would fall to Campbellsville 11-1. The Patriot ladies now stand with an 11-18 overall record and 8-8 in MSC play.
The first game was a pitcher's duel as both teams remained scoreless into the bottom of the 7th inning. There were several outstanding plays by Cumberlands' defense, which helped to keep the Tigers at bay. One of which was in the top of the 7th inning when Campbellsville's Kate Black hit a hard line drive up the left field line, but was robbed by UC's third baseman Ashleigh Hopf (Dayton, OH) who made an outstanding catch. The bottom of the 7th inning was led off by Nichol Chesley (Dayton, OH) who was hit by a pitch and sent to first base. Next up was Mary Beth Hogue (Hustonville, KY) who laid down a beautiful sacrifice bunt to advance Chesley to second base, putting her in scoring position. Taryn Sigl (Sacramento, CA) was next at the plate and she too was hit by a pitch and sent to first base, putting runners on first and second. Kenly Lambert (Fairview, TN) came in clutch for the Patriots as she hit a single to shallow left field to advance the runners 60 feet and load the bases.
Coach Dean decided to pull pinch runner Cassandra Johnson (London, KY) from the bench to replace Chesley on third base. With bases loaded and two outs, left-handed hitter Missy Buchannan (Science Hill, TN) would be put to the test as she stepped up to the plate. On a full count pitch, she made contact and hit the ball up the middle to the CU pitcher who booted the ball, called an error, and allowed Johnson to score, which gave the Patriots the win with a final score of 1-0.
Nichol Chelsey would be credited with the win as she pitched a complete game going 7.0 innings allowing no runs with 2 hits and 2 walks while striking out 6 on the game. Her record now moves to 8-9 on the season with a 2.44 ERA.
The second game started off with a little excitement as Bethany Davis (Nicholasville, KY) blasted a homerun over the left field fence in the bottom of the 1st inning to tie the game 1-1. Unfortunately, the Tigers would really step up their game offensively and defensively and UC would be unable to grab any more runs. The Patriots fought back and got a few more hits on the game as Kayla Crisp (Oliver Springs, TN) and Tori Poma (Las Vegas, NV) would add one a piece. Sadly, the game would go to the Tigers as they took the victory with a final score of 11-1 against UC.
Starting on the mound in game 2 for the Patriots was Kenly Lambert who would pitch 2.0 innings, but allowed 3 runs on 3 hits and one walk. Replacing Lambert was Ashleigh Hopf who pitched 1.2 innings allowing 3 runs off of 7 hits while striking out 1. The final pitcher of the game was Taryn Sigl who pitched the last 3.1 innings as she allowed 5 runs off of 8 hits and 2 walks while striking out 2.
The Patriots ladies will be back for another MSC match up on Friday April 11th as they travel to Pikeville, KY to take on the University of Pikeville Bears. The first pitch is set for 3:00 pm.
For more information on the Patriot softball program along with other Patriot athletics, please visit www.cumberlandspatriots.com.