CHATTANOOGA, TN -- Lindsay Lane (Erwin, Tenn.) went two-for-three with a
home run and three RBI while pitcher Belinda Barerra (Fayetteville, N.C.)
pitched three scoreless innings of relief to lead
sixth-seeded East Tennessee State to a 5-4 extra-innings
upset of third-seeded Georgia Southern in the first round
of the 2004 SoCon Softball Championships.
ETSU wasted no time getting on the board in the top of the
first inning as leadoff hitter Janine Sprague Hillsborough, N.C.) drew a walk
and moved to second on a Tiffany McVay (Soddy-Daisy, Tenn.) single. With one
out, Lane, the cleanup hitter, belted a three-run home run
down the left field line to give the Bucs an early 3-0
The Bucs added another run in the second inning when Sprague's double to center field scored Sheryl Clark.
Georgia Southern responded with a big inning of its own in the third, plating three runs to cut ETSU's margin to one. The Eagles's Logan Free scored on an Aurora
Johnson sacrifice fly to left field, while Shanita Black
and Carolynn Chin both crossed the plate on a two-out
bases loaded single by SoCon Freshman of the Year Maria
GSU evened the score in the bottom of the fifth. With
runners on first and second base, Eagle shortstop Kim
Griffin knocked a one-out single to center field, scoring
The game remained tied until the top of the eighth inning
when ETSU scored the go-ahead run with a Mary Beth
Hazelwood (Knoxville, Tenn.) single followed by Sprague's triple to the
fence in left center field.
The Eagles threatened in the bottom of the eighth, placing
runners on second and third base with two outs, but ETSU
pitcher Barrera forced GSU first baseman Heather
Smith to pop out to the catcher to end the game. For
Barrera, it was her 10th victory of the season.
Sprague, Hazelwood, and McVay knocked two hits apiece to
pace the Bucs. Georgia Southern was lead by leadoff
hitter Shanita Black who went three-of-four with a run
ETSU (29-32, 8-13) will advance to face the number two seed College of Charleston Cougars Friday evening at 6:00 pm.
Georgia Southern (29-28, 11-10) will take on Furman University Friday at 12:30 p.m.
"It was exciting to win our first game, especially versus the number three seed. Both teams came out fired
up. It was relieving to win a close game, and hopefully
we can use this momentum to carry us on." - ETSU
head Amy Fuller
"We had the opportunity to step up but didn't
make the most of it. We had opportunities early in the
game and late in the game but didn't get it done in
the end. Errors cost us, we didn't get the hits
when we needed them, and they outhit us." - Georgia
Southern head coach Natalie Poole