HAMMOND, La. – The Southeastern Louisiana softball team battled to a doubleheader split with Northwestern State to close out the teams’ Southland Conference series Saturday afternoon at North Oak Park.
Southeastern (20-22, 9-9 Southland) closed out the series with an 8-0 mercy-rule victory over the visiting Lady Demons (18-25-1, 8-10 Southland). Junior Rachel Hayes (7-6) threw a complete-game, one-hit shutout for SLU, retiring the final 18 batters she faced.
Junior catcher Whitney Sullivan led the Lady Lions at the plate in the win with three RBI. Junior outfielder Kinsey Nichols, freshman infielder Ali McCoy and junior outfielder Maddie Edmonston each drove in runs for Southeastern. Edmonston also led SLU with two runs scored.
In the opening game of the day, Southeastern was unable to rally from a 6-0 deficit in a 6-4 loss that gave NSU the series. Edmonston, McCoy and junior infielder Alli Daigle had RBI in the loss for SLU.
SLU will continue its home stand on Monday, hosting ULM in a 5 p.m. non-conference contest at North Oak Park. LionVision subscribers will be able to access a live video stream (no audio) at www.LionSports.net/watch.
Game One – Northwestern State 6, Southeastern Louisiana 4
Northwestern State jumped out to a 4-0 lead versus SLU junior Lacey Hill in the top of the first inning. An error by Daigle led to four unearned runs and an early hole for the Lady Lions to overcome.
NSU added single runs in the third and fourth inning to stretch the lead to 6-0. Southeastern cut the lead in half in the bottom of the fourth inning. Nichols drew a leadoff walk and advanced to third on a double by junior infielder Mahalia Gibson. RBI groundouts by McCoy and Daigle plated both runners. After junior infielder Grace DeLee drew a walk, Edmonston ripped a double into the left centerfield gap to cut the advantage to 6-3.
In the bottom of the fifth inning, Watts drew a leadoff walk, advanced to second when Nichols was hit by a pitch with one out. Watts would eventually score on an error by Micayla Sorosiak to cut the lead to 6-4.
Southeastern mounted one last threat in the bottom of the seventh inning. Ramon was hit by a pitch and Gibson singled to put a pair of runners on with one out. However, NSU reliever Hayley Barbazon retired McCoy and Daigle to earn her first save of the season.
NSU – 401 100 0 – 6 9 1 (18-24-1, 8-9 SLC)
SLU – 000 310 0 – 4 5 3 (19-22, 8-9 SLC)
Katelyn Boles, Hayley Barbazon (5) and Emma Hawthorne. Lacey Hill, Ali McCoy (1) and Carlie Whittington, Whitney Sullivan (4). W – Boles (5-11). L – Hill (8-8). Save – Barbazon (1). 3B – NSU: Kellye Kincannon (4), Brittany Jones (1). 2B – NSU: Micayla Sorosiak (11); SLU: Mahalia Gibson (8), Maddie Edmonston (3). T – 2:08. A – 282.
Game Two – Southeastern Louisiana 8, Northwestern State 0
Hayes gave up a single to Sidney Salmans to lead off the game. That would be the last baserunner Northwestern State would earn, as Hayes retired the next 18 Lady Demons she faced.
Southeastern would score all the runs it would need in the bottom of the first inning. Watts led off the frame with a walk and eventually scored when Nichols doubled over NSU left fielder Kellye Kincannon’s head. Nichols would move to third on a single by Gibson and scored on an RBI groundout by McCoy. Gibson would later score on a wild pitch by Mikayla Brown (10-11) to give SLU a 3-0 lead.
SLU doubled its lead in the bottom of the fourth inning. Edmonston plated the inning’s first run with a double down the left field line. Two more runs would come in when Sullivan sliced a two-run single into right centerfield to put the Lady Lions ahead, 6-0.
Ramon added to SLU’s lead in the bottom of the fifth inning. The Channelview, Texas native walked, stole second and scored on a Sorosiak error to give Southeastern a 7-0 advantage.
Southeastern ended it early in the bottom of the sixth inning. Edmonston walked, stole second and scored on an RBI single by Sullivan to enforce the mercy rule.
NSU – 000 000 – 0 1 1 (18-25-1, 8-10 SLC)
SLU – 300 311 – 8 7 0 (20-22, 9-9 SLC)
Mikayla Brown, Katelyn Boles (6) and Emma Hawthorne. Rachel Hayes and Carlie Whittington, Whitney Sullivan (5). W – Hayes (7-6). L – Brown (10-11). 2B – SLU: Kinsey Nichols (4), Maddie Edmonston (4). T – 1:31. A – 232.