MORRISTOWN, Tenn. — Walters State used three big home runs to run-rule Dyersburg State, 10-1, in the first game of a softball double header Saturday afternoon but pretty much self imploded in the second game.
The Lady Eagles rolled up a 9-3 victory to salvage their only win in the four-game set thanks to what had to be one of the worst performances of the season for Walters State.
Coach Larry Sauceman pretty well summed it up when he said, "We beat them three times and than gave them one. We were a giving team today and let a win walk out of here."
The winners had only six hits with five of those coming in the first three innings.
However, it was a very uncharacteristic Lady Senators in game two. They committed five errors, left a dozen runners on base in the seven innings and even messed up a rundown so badly that it allowed two runners to score.
With the split, Walters State is now 25-16 for the season and 17-8 in Tennessee Community College Athletic Association play. The Lady Eagles stand at 12-11 in the conference and 20-13 overall.
Sauceman was anything but pleased even after the easy first-game triumph. "That's what they do when you've got a bunch of young ones that don't know what's going on a little bit sometimes. They beat them three times and then they go 'oh, we've got this."
"Then they go out there and don't get 'em out and give 'em a little hope and next thing you know you get beat," he said. "You get behind and you can't catch up."
He added, "We didn't hit when we needed to. We tried to hit a little bit and got a big home run out of (Sydney) Dukes. But other than that, we didn't do much. We had plenty of chances to get back in the game after we got down but couldn't."
The Lady Senators wound up with nine hits off winning hurler Kendall Hyatt who also walked six batters while striking out five.
Dyersburg got a solo home run in the first from Taylor Travis and then scored five times in the third off just three hits with a two-run single from first game loser Shelby Autry the big blow.
The Lady Senators left two runners on in the first, second, third and fourth and left the bases loaded in the sixth. Keeley Quillen walked and scored on an error in the third and Dukes clubbed a two-run homer in the fourth.
In the seventh the Lady Eagles pretty much put the game out of reach, scoring three times on a lone single and three errors. Two runs scored when Dyersburg missed a squeeze bunt attempt with runners on second and third. The runner was trapped off third and the catcher ran her back toward the bag and then tossed to the third baseman.
But nobody covered the plate and the third baseman had to try to make the tag herself and wound up losing the ball and it bounced away far enough for the other runner to score.
Travis added a single to her home run and Emily Gilstrap and Autry both added two hits as the three combined for all the Lady Eagles' hits.
Dukes and Kallyn Newport had two hits apiece for Walters State.
Lauren Brickey the hitting hero of the first game took the mound loss.
The Lady Senators were impressive in the first game. They got great pitching, hit three home runs and didn't make an error.
Brickey smacked a three-run homer to highlight the Lady Senators' five run first with Emily Whitaker's double the only other hit in the inning off Autry.
Newport singled and Brickey belted a two-run shot in the third before Taylor Henson closed it out with a three-run blast with two out in the fifth.
Delilah Malczewski turned in a great pitching performance despite a shaky start. She gave up the only run and the only two hits she surrendered in the first.
But from there, the only baserunner the Lady Eagles managed was a walk with one out in the second. Malczewski retired the final 11 batters she faced.
Brickey and Henson were the only players in the game with two hits. Emily Hooper and Gilstrap had singles for the losers.