NATCHITOCHES – Senior Kellye Kincannon continued her dominance over Louisiana Tech pitching Wednesday as her two home runs lifted Northwestern State to a 5-3 win at Lady Demon Diamond.
Kincannon (2-for-3, four RBIs) smashed two two-run home runs in her first two at bats against starting pitcher Preslee Gallaway (7-6).
The Lake Jackson, Texas, native hit multiple home runs for the first time this season and sixth of her career – three of those games have come against the Lady Techsters (16-10).
In seven career games, Kincannon is 14-of-27 with seven home runs, 21 RBIs and 10 runs scored.
NSU (10-16-1) snapped a seven-game losing streak (five losses of two runs or less) before the Lady Demons (0-3 Southland Conference) welcome Abilene Christian for a three-game series starting Friday (5 p.m.) with a Saturday doubleheader (noon).
“I was very confident in the box tonight, and I was seeing the ball well,” said Kincannon, who has helped the Lady Demons win seven of the eight last games against Lady Techsters. “(NSU coach Donald Pickett) told us to be aggressive on strikes waist down, and that’s what I did.
“It means a lot to beat Louisiana Tech — they’re near us and are a very respectable program. It’s special because you get to know the players on that team and build relationships with them, so it’s fun.”
Kincannon’s offense was enough for pitchers Mikayla Brown (5-7) and Katelyn Boles, who earned her first career save.
Brown allowed three runs (two earned) in four innings before Boles tossed three scoreless innings.
Louisiana Tech’s Tori Charters led off the seventh inning with a triple, but she slipped when deciding whether or not to go home. NSU tagged Charters out at home after a run down, and Boles retired the next two batters.
Boles allowed three hits in her three innings with one strikeout.
“I really focused on going after the batters on the first pitch and getting ahead in the count,” Boles said. “That way I have more time to work my other stuff and get pop ups.
“This win gives us the right momentum. We’ve had a tough past seven games, and we finally put all three phases together.”
Senior third baseman Jordan Rains supplied NSU’s other run in the second inning when she singled in junior Hailee Rhodes. Rhodes hit a leadoff double off Gallaway, who allowed five runs on five hits in two-plus innings.
Kincannon’s second home run in the third inning, which hit near the top of the scoreboard in right field, chased Gallaway.
With the pair of home runs, Kincannon is just four homers away from tying Cassandra Barefield’s career mark of 53. Kincannon’s 140 career runs is also moving in on program leader Nicole Martin (164).
Kincannon already owns career records in total bases and RBIs.
Louisiana Tech reliever Krystal De La Cruz pitched four scoreless innings with just one hit allowed in the no-decision.
NSU freshman Julie Rawls scored on both of Kincannon’s home runs. Rawls reached on a fielder’s choice in the first inning after a Sidney Salmans single and was hit by a pitch in the third inning.
Brown breezed through the first two innings before a Morgan Turkoly double plated two runs. The Lady Techsters added a fourth inning run on an error to cut NSU’s lead to 5-3.