Softball finishes weekend 1-3

Sean Hastings, Staff Reporter

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The Eastern softball team went 1-3 over the weekend in Kennesaw, Ga. at the Kennesaw State Owl Invitational.

Despite the losses, the Panthers’ bats were alive for most of the weekend senior Bailey O’Dell said.

“Well this weekend, especially in (Sunday’s) games our hitting really showed up,” O’Dell said. “We were getting on base and getting hits we needed during crucial situations.”

The Panthers lone win came in the second game of the weekend against Northern Kentucky in walk-off fashion.

The team was lead by O’Dell who drove in four out of the six runs.

Her home run came in the 6th inning to cut the Northern Kentucky lead to 4-2.

Heading into the bottom of the 7th, the Panthers were down by a score of 5-2, but

Eastern would score four runs in the bottom half to win the game.

The scoring was started by freshman Tori Johnson who singled to right field to drive in junior April Markowski.

O’Dell drove in two more runs to tie the game and fellow senior Hannah Cole ended it with a double to center that scored freshman Andrea Roberts.

Freshman pitcher Jessica Wireman got the win for the Panthers after coming in for relief of freshman pitcher Michelle Rogers.

The Panthers dropped the first game to head coach Angie Nicholson’s former team, Cleveland State.

The game was scoreless up until the bottom of the fifth inning when Cleveland State homered to score two runs. They would add one more in the sixth to win the game 3-0.

Wireman was on the mound and took the loss.

After the Panthers walked off against Northern Kentucky, the tables were turned and Indiana University won on a walk-off to win 9-8.

Eastern had five different players drive in runs.

Eastern got on the board first on a 2-RBI single by junior Kylie Bennett. Bennett later scored on a double by Markowski.

O’Dell hit her two home runs in the game, making her total three for the weekend.

Sophomore Ashlynne Paul drove in Markowski on a single in the sixth.

The Panthers had the lead in the top of the seventh, 8-7, but Indiana junior Kelsey Dotson hit a two-run walk-off home run to give the Hoosiers the victory.

Wireman would take the loss again on the mound.

In the final game of the weekend, the Panthers fell to tournament host Kennesaw State 6-4.

Eastern scored three runs in the top of the first, but the Owls would score four runs on a grand slam off of Wireman in the bottom half.

Cole and Bennett were the run producers for the Panthers in the game.

Cole had two RBI’s and Bennett also had two, including a solo homerun. Bennett finished the day 2-3.

The Panthers now begins conference play with three games against Austin Peay March 14 and 15 in Clarksville, Tenn.

O’Dell said the team has a different approach to the rest of the season with the conference games.

“We have to have a kill or be killed attitude towards these games,” she said. “Every single one can make a difference in our success for this season.”

Sean Hastings can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected]