Lander wins pair of pitchers' duels at Emmanuel

Lander wins pair of pitchers' duels at Emmanuel

FRANKLIN SPRINGS, Ga. – The Lander softball team held Emmanuel to two runs in 14 innings while the offense used late-inning firepower to give the Bearcats a road sweep of the Lions on Tuesday with wins of 2-0 and 5-2. 

Lander (25-17) notched its second 25-win season in three years for the first time since 2004-06, while Emmanuel (18-24) suffered its first sweep in 12 days. 

Pitching dominated the first game of the day as the score stood tied 0-0 entering the top of the seventh. Alana Frye led off with a single and a two-out single from Kelli McCormack put runners on the corners. After McCormack stole second, Chandler Carey broke the tie with a two-run single to give the Bearcats the lead heading to the bottom of the seventh. 

McKenzi Ferguson (17-7) took over from there, stranding Lion runners at first and third to finish off a complete-game effort. Ferguson held Emmanuel to six hits and struck out 11 while walking just one batter on the day. Emmanuel's Erin Harden (10-9) took the loss, allowing two runs on seven hits with six walks and six strikeouts in 7.0 innings. 

Game two remained scoreless into the fifth inning before a pair of RBI doubles from McCormack and Kasey Rogers put the Bearcats up 3-0. Rogers came around to score on an error and a solo home run from McCormack in the sixth gave Lander a 5-0 lead. 

Emmanuel threatened in the seventh with a pair of runs, but Brianna Surrento relieved Ashley Vinson to retire the final batter and secure the sweep. Vinson (3-1) earned the win by allowing two runs on just three hits with three walks and four strikeouts in 6.2 innings of work. Madison Hopper (2-4) suffered the loss, allowing five runs on 10 hits with three walks and three strikeouts. 

Lander heads to Southern Wesleyan on Thursday for its final road trip of the regular season.