The Belmont Abbey softball team lost both games of a doubleheader to the visiting Coker Cobras this afternoon, dropping the opener 7-1 and nearly winning game two before falling 7-6. Coker improves to 19-14, while the Abbey slips to 8-19.
In the opener, the contest was scoreless until the third when the Cobras moved ahead 1-0. Tyresha Ellis led off with a single to center, was sacrificed to second by Corrine Stiles, moved to third on a wild pitch and scored on Katelyn Szupello's single up the middle.
Belmont Abbey pulled even in the fourth, thanks to a Coker error. Amber Faust reached on a leadoff error, moved to second on a sacrifice bunt by Shanie McConnell, advanced to third on a groundout by Nicole Stovall and scored on a single by Brooke Pegram.
Two innings later, Coker surged ahead for good with four runs, three coming on a Taylor Barcomb homer to left, and the other on a single to left by Riley Morris.
The Cobras tacked on two insurance runs in the seventh on a Ashley Gallman double to the gap in right center, and a sacrifice fly from Morris that scored Szupello.
Tabitha Allen went the distance in the circle for the Cobras, as she allowed just an unearned run on eight hits, walking two and striking out none. Belmont Abbey starter Shannan Mas suffered the loss after pitching five innings, giving up three runs, all earned, on six hits, striking out four and walking none.
In game two, Coker built a 5-0 lead after three innings as the Cobras scored once in the first and second and three more in the third.
Belmont Abbey pulled one back in the bottom of the third as Stovall worked a leadoff walk, moved to second on an infield single by Pegram and scored on Periero's double to the gap in right center.
That was all of the scoring until the sixth, when the Abbey plated two more runs to trim the deficit to 5-3. Stovall singled home Anna Mixa, then Pereiro scored on a bases loaded walk.
Coker added two very valuable insurance runs in the top of the seventh to move its lead to 7-3, and then the Cobras held off a seventh inning rally by the Crusaders to hold on for the one run win.
After a leadoff groundout, Jena Reisenauer drew a walk and scored on Mixa's homer, a towering shot over the fence in left center to cut the Coker lead to 7-5. Shanie McConnell followed with a walk and she took second on a Cobras throwing error on the attempted force play. Dani Marietta reached first on that play. McConnell and Marietta moved up one base on a wild pitch. After a lineout for the second out of the inning, Lauren Clifford brought home McConnell with an infield single to second to cut the deficit to 7-6. With the tying run just 60 feet away, a groundout ended the game.
Brittany Long earned the win for the Cobras, as she pitched the first six innings, surrendering three runs on seven hits, striking out one and walking five. Samantha Jacobs took the loss after allowing five runs on seven hits in five innings, striking out two.
Mixa and McConnell led the Abbey with two hits apiece as the Crusaders totaled nine. Pereiro and Mixa each drove in two runs.