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Longwood Edges Liberty, 3-2, in 8 Innings
Liberty broke a 1-1 tie with an eighth-inning run, before the host Longwood Lancers scored twice in the bottom of the inning to gain a 3-2, walk-off win during game one of a doubleheader on Thursday at Lancer Field.
With the win, Longwood's seventh in the row, the Lancers improve to 14-5 on the season, including 3-0 in Big South play. The Lady Flames now hold a 2-22 ledger, with an 0-4 record in conference games. For the game, Longwood left 11 on base, while Liberty stranded eight runners.
Longwood's Elizabeth McCarthy (6-2) pitched a complete game, allowing two runs, one earned, on 10 hits while striking out six.
Annah Jo Brittingham (1-12) gave up three runs (two earned) on seven hits, fanning three and walking four.
Seven different Lancers recorded base hits, with Justina Augustine hitting a double and Emily Murphy and Katie Shinrock driving in one run apiece.
For the Lady Flames, Hanna Nichols went 2-for-4 with a double and an RBI, while Katie Zavodny batted 2-for-4 with a run scored. Kelby Allen hit 1-for-4 with a run scored and one driven in.
The Lancers pushed across one run during the bottom of the first. After Chelsea Sciacca hit into a fielder's choice with runners on first and second, Shinrock hit a two-out, RBI single on the infield, making it 1-0, Lancers. Jamie Barbour flied out to left, ending the inning.
Brittingham worked out of a two-out jam during the second inning. Amy Putnam singled, and Murphy walked, before the Liberty right-hander fanned Carly Adams to strand both runners.
Longwood left the bases loaded at the end of the third, after reaching via an error and two hit batters. Augustine grounded into a fielder's choice for the third out, and the score stayed at 1-0.
Megan Robinson led off the fourth with an infield single. After two straight 6-4 fielder's choice plays, Nichols grounded to third, and the Lady Flames remained scoreless.
Brittingham pitched a 1-2-3 bottom of the fourth, and worked around a one-out single to keep the Lancers off the board in the fifth stanza.
The Lady Flames knotted the score at 1-1 by manufacturing a run in the top of the sixth inning. Zavodny led off with a single, and went to third on an error. Allen then grounded out, plating Zavodny. Sammi Shivock hit into a fielder's choice, as Murphy threw out Robinson at the plate. Nichols then lofted a hit just past first base, and Shivock was thrown out in a rundown, trying to score.
A three-batter Lancer sixth sent the game to the seventh frame tied at 1-all.
Grace Nordan and Blair Lawrence hit back-to-back two-out singles to left during Liberty's seventh time at bat. McCarthy got out of the jam, as Zavodny fouled out to end the rally.
The Lancers loaded the bases with one out in the bottom of the seventh frame. Brittingham extended the game, getting Shinrock to pop out and striking out Barbour.
Liberty took the lead in the top of with three consecutive one-out base hits. Allen led off the procession, followed by Shivock, before Nichols ripped a single to center to score Allen. McCarthy then struck out the next two batters, but not before the Lady Flame took a 2-1 edge.
Taylor Hedrick opened the eighth with a single, and Augustine then ripped a double to left. With runners on second and third and one out, Murphy lifted a sacrifice fly to right to tie the game, and the winning run scored after the throw home got away from Allen.