Belmont Abbey freshman Sloane McPeak crushed two homers, including a grand slam, while driving in seven runs as the Crusaders women's softball team split a doubleheader at #25 Wingate this afternoon. Belmont Abbey upset the Bulldogs 4-2 in the opener and fell 14-10 in the nightcap. Wingate is now 5-1 on the year, while the Crusaders improve to 1-3.
It is believed to be the first time in the program's history, dating back to its first year in 1994, that the Crusaders have defeated a nationally-ranked team.
In the opener, McPeak gave the Crusaders a 2-0 lead in the top of the first as she smashed her first career homer, a two run shot to left.
Wingate tied the game with two unanswered runs, starting with one in the first and another in the second, but the Crusaders surged ahead with two runs in the sixth.
Jena Reisenauer drove home what turned out to be the winning run when she smoked a double to the gap in left center, scoring Amber Fasut. Reisenauer moved to third on a throwing error on that same play, and Anna Mixa brought her home with a single to left for a 4-2 Abbey lead.
Samantha Jacobs made the lead stand up, as she went the distance in the circle and worked around a one out single in the seventh to preserve the upset win.
Jacobs improved to 1-1 as she fanned five in a complete game effort, scattering five hits. Only one of the two runs was earned. Stacey Houser took the loss after allowing four runs, three earned, while striking out eight.
The Crusaders rapped out nine hits as McPeak and Shanie McConnell both had two.
In the nightcap, Belmont Abbey looked as if it was going to put Wingate away early as the Crusaders exploded ahead 10-2 after scoring four runs in the ninth, but Wingate plated 12 unanswered runs to come all the way back and win 14-10.
Trailing 2-1 entering the fourth inning, Belmont Abbey scored nine runs, four on a grand slam by McPeak and two more on a single by Dani Marietta that ran the lead to 10-2.
Incredibly, Wingate matched the Abbey's nine spot in the bottom of the inning as it surged ahead 11-10. The Bulldogs added two more in the fifth on a pair of singles and the lead stood up even after an Abbey rally in the sixth that saw the Crusaders load the bases with two outs, but a groundout ended the threat.
Houser, the third pitcher of the game for Wingate, earned the win in three and one-thirds innings of scoreless relief, allowing just two hits while fanning three.
Shannan Mas, the second of three Abbey hurlers, was charged with the loss after giving up four runs, all unearned, on three hits in five batters faced.
McPeak, Marietta and Nicole Stovall each had two hits as the Crusaders totaled nine. McPeak drove in five runs with Marietta collecting two RBI.