Columbia, MO – The University of the Cumberlands softball team was back on the field at the NAIA National Championships Opening Rounds. The Patriots were eliminated from the tournament as they fell to 18th-ranked Rams of University of Mobile by a final score of 6-3. The Rams improve to 38-18 on the year as UC wraps up their season with a record of 19-34.
In the first inning, the Patriots had runners on second and third but were unable to push a run across. Katie Baldock (FR/Ashland, KY) made her way to second on a Rams' error and a stolen base while Ciara England (SO/Mooresville, IN) followed up with a walk. Hannah Stephenson (FR/Knoxville, TN) advanced Baldock and England up a base, but the Rams captured the final out to keep UC scoreless. Mobile paired two hits with a walk to take the lead 1-0 in their first inning opportunity.
The second inning was quiet offensively with both teams being put out 1, 2, 3. The Patriots showed stellar defense in the inning as Taryn Sigl (SR/Sacramento, CA) caught a line drive up the middle, Kaylee James (SR/Oakley, CA) had a standout catch into the fence, and a strikeout for Sigl in the circle. In the third inning, UC knocked in a run to tie up the game. James was hit by a pitch and stole second followed by a single from Baldock to score James, tying the game at 1-1. The Rams answered back in the inning with a run to retake the lead at 2-1.
In the fourth inning, UC gathered a sole hit by Hayley Kilburn (FR/Ashland, KY) but the Rams showed strong defense to keep the lead. Mobile chipped in two more runs in their offensive opportunity to extend their lead to 4-1. The Patriots had ananother scoring opportunity in the fifth inning as Cassandra Johnson (SR/London, KY) led with a single and moved to third off a single by Coari Robertson (JR/Nabb, IN). A double steal by Johnson and Robertson paired with a Rams' error allowed Johnson to score and Robertson to take second, shrinking the Rams' lead to 4-2. Mobile again answered back with a run to push their lead further at 5-2.
The Patriots earned another run in the sixth as the Rams were plagued with errors. Hayley Kilburn made her way on base off an error, while a fielder's choice for Aryanna Cannoy (FR/Catlettsburg, KY) would force Kilburn out at second. Elisa Mauldin (JR/Greenville, SC) earned the RBI as Mobile gathered another error in left field and Cannoy legged it out from first, shortening the Rams' lead to 5-3. Just like before, the Rams answered back with a run to push their lead to 6-3. The Patriots held a runner on first in the seventh inning as Baldock singled. With two outs, Amber Mainord (SR/Cookeville, TN) earned the walk for UC to have runners on first and second. Unfortunately, the Rams captured the final out to take the win 6-3.
Offensively, Katie Baldock led the Patriots as she made her way on base in each opportunity. Baldock recorded two hits, an RBI, and a stolen base. Cassandra Johnson chipped in a hit, a stolen base, and a run. Elisa Mauldin earned an RBI of her own while Kaylee James and Aryanna Cannoy gathered a run. In the circle, Taryn Sigl received the loss in four innings of work. Sigl allowed eight hits and four runs (all earned) with a walk and a strikeout. Sydney Maynard (FR/Miltan, WV) pitched two innings in relief, allowing four hits and two runs (all earned) with a walk.
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