Softball sweeps LaGrange

Alyssa Statham crosses the plate after hitting a home run (photo by Jimmy Mitchell)
Alyssa Statham crosses the plate after hitting a home run (photo by Jimmy Mitchell)

BIRMINGHAM, Ala.—The Birmingham-Southern softball team picked up two wins at home Wednesday evening, defeating LaGrange College, 3-1 and 3-2, at the BSC Softball Park.

The BSC Panthers moved to 13-5-1 with their fifth-straight win, while the LaGrange Panthers dropped to 12-8.

Game one's offense came off the bat of senior Alyssa Statham, as she hit her sixth and seventh home runs of the year for all three of BSC's RBI. The first, a two-run shot over the left field fence, was in the bottom of the third. LaGrange got on the board with a single run in the top of the fourth, but Statham hit another one over the left field fence in the bottom of the fifth to put BSC up 3-1. LaGrange put the game-tying run on base in both the sixth and seventh innings, including getting runners on the corners in the top of the seventh, but the BSC defense, including strong pitching from sophomore Taylor Harkins, preserved the victory.

Harkins threw the complete game, moving to 6-4 on the season. She gave up seven hits, one earned run, and one walk, while striking out three LaGrange batters. Statham and sophomore Torrie Garner were both 2-3 at the plate.

BSC scored two runs again early in the nightcap, plating two in the bottom of the first. The first was a sac-fly from freshman Micaela Beck, bringing senior Taylor Bassett home after a walk, a single from sophomore Maddie Ridgway, and a wild pitch got her to third. A Statham RBI single then plated Ridgway to put BSC up 2-0. In the bottom of the third, BSC scored on a double steal with sophomore Ashley Leonard going home and the LaGrange defense trying unsuccessfully to throw out Statham at second.

LaGrange put up two runs in the top of the fifth to cut it to 3-2, and had the go-ahead run on base in the top of the sixth, but the BSC defense came up big again and LaGrange left both runners stranded. In the top of the seventh, LaGrange got the game-tying run to third with only one out on the board, but the next two batters popped up to the infield and BSC clinched the 3-2 win.

Senior Bethany Fronk pitched a complete game, moving to 7-1 after allowing seven hits, two earned runs, and one walk, with seven strikeouts. Ridgway was 2-3 at the plate to lead BSC.

The Panthers travel to Danville, Ky., this weekend to face Centre College in a four-game conference series. Doubleheaders begin at noon EDT both Saturday, March 28, and Sunday, March 29.