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Blue Hose Edge Lady Flames, 3-1
Despite outhitting the Blue Hose, 8-6, the Lady Flames dropped a 3-1 decision to Presbyterian College, Saturday afternoon. With the win, the Blue Hose completed the sweep of the day's conference doubleheader, as they picked up Game 1, 4-2.
The Lady Flames put a runner in scoring position in the top of the first, but couldn't capitalize. Jenny Law hit a one-out single to right, and moved to second when Kelly Strickland reached on a fielding error by left fielder Kayla Handy. Law advanced to third when Meredith Baisden reached on a fielder's choice, as Strickland was forced out at second on the play. Kaylee West then grounded out to the pitcher to end the at-bat.
Liberty recorded three more hits in the second, but again left all runners stranded. With one out, Bridgett Woods singled to the shortstop, and an out later, Cassie Hendrix and J'nae Jefferson hit back-to-back singles. But Jenny Law lined out to second for the third out, and the game stayed scoreless.
Presbyterian put a runner in scoring position in the bottom of the second. Taylor Staten led off with a walk, and advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt by Amanda Miller. Kayla Handy then grounded out to shortstop, and pitcher Kat Johnson struck out Mary Ellen Morris to end the inning.
The Lady Flames took a 1-0 lead in the top of the fourth when Amber DePasquale, who singled on a bunt, scored on a wild pitch with one out to give Liberty the advantage.
But Presbyterian quickly overtook that lead, going ahead 2-1 in the bottom of the fourth. Katie Anderson led off with a single to right, and pinch runner Becca Caldwell moved to second when Brittany Howell grounded out to first. Staten then singled up the middle, scoring Caldwell from second. Staten then stole third, and scored on a throwing error by catcher Keely McMillon, giving the Blue Hose a one-run lead.
Presbyterian picked up another run in the bottom of the fifth. Tera Powell led off with an infield single, and advanced to second on a wild pitch. She crossed the plate when Morgan Durham singled to right, and Durham was thrown out at second on the play. The Liberty defense then executed two consecutive groundouts, but the damage had been done, as the Blue Hose held a 3-1 lead going into the sixth frame.
Hendrix led off the top of the seventh with a double down the left field line, but she never advanced, and Presbyterian held on to win, 3-1.
With the loss, Liberty drops to 33-16 overall and 9-5 in conference play, while the Blue Hose improve to 20-24 overall and 4-13 in the Big South.
Hendrix was 3-for-3 at the plate for Liberty, and Jefferson batted 2-for-4.
The Blue Hose were led by Powell, who was 3-for-3 with a run scored, and Durham and Staten each drove in a run.
Johnson drops to 7-4 with the loss, after giving up six hits and recording four strikeouts. Leslie Hensley improves to 9-11 after giving up eight hits and striking out four Liberty batters.
The two squads will face off for the final game of the three-game conference series tomorrow afternoon. First pitch is scheduled for 1 p.m.