SHREVEPORT, La. – It looked as if Ladies Softball's season might end early Saturday afternoon and then early evening, but they clawed back twice for come-from-behind wins before losing the nightcap in an extra-inning heartbreaker as Centenary (18-23) finished third in the Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference Softball Tournament for the third time in the last four seasons.
The Ladies trailed Trinity (17-23) 4-0 before a six-run fifth gave them the win. Against an upstart Dallas (8-33) team, the #6 seed, Centenary won a 9-8 thriller. In the final game of the day, the Ladies gave #22 Southwestern (35-5) all it could handle before falling in eight innings, 3-2.
Against the Tigers down four, junior Kaitlyn Price singled to lead off the bottom of the fifth. Junior pinch hitter Ashley Albright hit a dribbler to short for an infield hit. Freshman pinch hitter Nichole Gauntt hit a ball to short that hopped up on the shortstop. Price scored the Ladies first run all the way from second and freshman pinch runner McKenzy LeJeune took third on the throw home. Junior Haley Campbell was hit with a pitch to load the bases before senior Wendy Gillet added a single to cut the deficit to two. Senior Sydney Hurley tied the game with a single to right center.
With the game tied, Hurley attempted to steal second. The catcher threw down, but no one was covering second so Gillet scored the go-ahead run on the throwing error. After a fielder's choice and two walks to load the bases, LeJuene drew a bases loaded walk to put Centenary up two.
Freshman Hannah Scoggin (9-5) allowed only an infield hit in the sixth and a walk in the seventh to pick up the win. She threw the final 3.2 innings in relief for the win.
After Emily Reed hit a solo home run in the second for Trinity, the Tigers scored three in the third to open up the 4-0 lead. With two on and two out, Brianna Pena singled up the middle to score a pair. However, a throwing error allowed Pena to move up to second. Another error allowed Pena to take third and score on Gina Monaco's single to right.
Pena led Trinity with two hits, two RBI, and a run scored. Allie Holbrook (10-12) took the loss, allowing six hits and six runs (four earned) in four innings of work.
Game two for the Ladies against Dallas proved to be a wild affair. However, it did not seem that way as both teams only managed a double and a hit-by-pitch with no runs scoring in the first two innings. In the bottom of the third with one on base and two outs, senior Margeaux Smith doubled in the first run of the game. Hurley followed with a single to move Smith to third, but the Dallas catcher lost control of the ball when she went to throw to allow Smith to score.
After Dallas scored two in the fourth and three in the fifth to go up 5-2, Centenary scored three in the fifth. With Smith on base and one out, she stole second and scored on Gillet's double. Senior Cassie Gonzales tripled to left center to score Gillet. Gonzales scored herself on a wild pitch.
The Crusaders scored two more in the sixth, but Centenary put up a four-spot to take the lead for good. Freshman Teri Johnson led off with a single. Campbell followed with a solid sacrifice attempt to the pitcher, but she mishandled it to allow everyone to be safe. Smith followed with a perfectly placed bunt to first and the second baseman was late to cover to load the bases. Hurley singled through the leftside to tie the game.
Senior Kelcie Bourgeois came in to pinch run for Hurley. She induced a throw on a steal attempt, and with the throw, Smith broke for home. The wild throw allowed Smith to successfully steal home and Bourgeois to take second. Gilllet followed with an RBI double to put the Ladies up two.
Gillet finished the game with three doubles and one single in as many at-bats with two RBI and a run scored. Amberlee Nix (6-11) threw the final 1.1 innings for the win, allowing two hits and a run.
Dallas took a 7-5 lead in the top of the sixth with a little two-out lightning. After a sacrifice put a pair in scoring position with two outs, Madison Coutts drove in a pair with a single to left center. Coutts finished the game 3-for-4 with two runs and two RBI.
Katelyn Lazarek added a single and double with three RBI and a run scored for Dallas. Karina Campo (3-13) took the loss in relief, allowing six hits and seven runs (six earned) in three innings.
Like Friday night, Southwestern and Centenary ended the day's events with an extra-inning thriller. The Pirates scored single tallies in the third and fourth, but the Ladies answered with single tallies in the next half innings. In the top of the fourth, Gonzales led off with an infield single. She then stole second, but the throw down popped out of the shortstop's glove to allow Gonzales to take third. Hurley flew out deep to left for the sacrifice fly to tie the game.
Southwestern scored a single tally in the bottom of the fourth, but Centenary again answered. After a one-out single and a hit by pitch, sophomore Becca McGough singled to right center to tie the game.
Gauntt led the Ladies from the plate with two hits and a run scored in three at-bats.
Southwestern scored the winning run in the bottom of the eighth. Maddie Mefford led off the inning with a single and was sacrificed to second. Kylie Nixon followed with a hit to the right center gap that scored the winning run off of Nix.
Mefford went 2-for-3 with two runs scored. Lindsey Longuet (15-3) threw all eight innings for the win, allowing six hits and two runs (one earned).