Samford Beats UTC 6-5 to Send Mocs Into Loser’s Bracket of SoCon Tournament


CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. – No. 2 seed Samford held off a late rally from No. 6 seed Chattanooga to grab a 6-5 win, advancing in the winners’ bracket at the Southern Conference Softball Championship on Thursday at Frost Stadium.

Samford (25-29) will play No. 1 seed UNCG on Friday at 10 a.m. Chattanooga (25-26) will now play No. 5 seed Mercer later Thursday at 8 p.m. in an elimination game.

Both teams scored in the opening inning. Chattanooga’s Olivia Lipari drew a two-out walk to give the squad its first baserunner of the day. Acelynn Sellers followed that with an RBI double to right center field to put the Mocs up 1-0.

The Bulldogs wasted no time answering that as Samford loaded the bases with its first three batters after two walks and an error. Two batters later, Merritt Cahoon singled to right field to bring Sarah Squillace across home plate to tie the score at 1-1. Lindsey Nelson drew a walk on the next at-bat to make the score 2-1, which was followed by a two-RBI single up the middle by McKenzie Newcomb, putting the Bulldogs ahead 4-1.

In the fourth inning, Chattanooga closed the gap to one run. Lipari drew a walk and Addy Keylon was hit by a pitch to put runners on first and second. Jayce Purdy hit a single through the left side after that to score Lipari and an error on the play allowed Keylon to score as well.

Samford would get a run back in the bottom of the frame. The Bulldogs loaded the bases with their first three batters after a walk, an error and a single. Two batters later, Cahoon drew a walk, forcing in a run to make the score 5-3 in favor of the Bulldogs.

One inning later, Samford continued to add to its lead. After Kinley Pate was hit with a pitch and Ansley Yantis singled, Squillace hit an RBI single to score Pate, making the score 6-3.

Chattanooga mounted a strong rally in the final frame. Kendall Forsythe and Emily Coltharp singled, bringing the tying run to the plate. Sellers then crushed a two-run double to right center field to make the score 6-5. Following a four-pitch walk to Keylon to bring the go-ahead run to the plate, Samford went to the bullpen. Newcomb, the SoCon Pitcher of the Year, came into the game and forced a foul out to first base to end the game.

Jordyn Partain (6-10) picked up the win after throwing 6 2/3 innings, striking out three batters and allowing three earned runs. Newcomb got her second save of the season in the contest.

Peja Goold pitched 5 2/3 innings in relief for the Mocs, finishing with six strikeouts and allowing one earned run. Taylor Long (4-8) received the loss.

Cahoon was 2-for-2 with two walks, two RBIs and a run scored. McKayla Cothran went 2-for-3 with an RBI and a run scored for Samford.

Sellers finished the game 2-for-3 with a double and three RBIs. Lipari had a double, two walks and two runs scored for the Mocs.

Categories: Sports – Local Sports News, Sports – UTC Mocs