Ladyjacks Drop Centenary on Road
March 16, 2006
SHREVEPORT, La. - The Stephen F. Austin Ladyjack softball team scored in each of the first three innings, then shut Centenary down late in the game to earn a 6-4 non-conference road win Thursday night. Carrie Woydziak had three hits and scored two runs, while Tara Hersey went 3-for-4 at the plate with three RBI to lead the Ladyjacks (9-15).
Woydziak was hit by a pitch to lead off the game, and she advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt by Benet Higgs. Lee Lara moved Woydziak over to third with a single to left field, then Lara took second base on the throw. Hersey batted next and drove in her first run of the game with a base knock up the middle. Lara was thrown out trying to score on a ground ball off the bat of Jessica Tullos, and Centenary starter Jessica Ivins got a strikeout to escape the inning without further damage.
Centenary got to SFA starter Kari Hugie for a couple of runs in the bottom half of the second. Emerald Doria drew a lead-off walk, then cleanup batter Jennifer Mango went deep over the right field fence to put the Ladies in the lead, 2-1.
The Ladyjacks answered with a big two-out rally in the third inning. Nicole Carter got things started with a single down the left field line. Woydziak followed with a bunt single, then Higgs loaded the sacks with a base hit through the right side of the infield. Lara was then hit by a pitch to plate Carter and tie the score. Hersey untied it with a single through the left side of the infield that brought Woydziak and Higgs around to score, putting SFA ahead, 4-2. The next batter, Tullos, hit a single to center field to load the bases again, but Ivins got out of the jam on an infield pop-up.
After holding Centenary scoreless in the second, SFA got on the board again in the third. Jennifer Valenti reached base on an error to lead off the inning. Two batters later, she moved to second when Carter singled to left field. That brought Ashley Lail out of the bullpen for the Ladies, but she fared no better. The first batter she faced, Woydziak, singled up the middle. Valenti was thrown out at the plate on the play, but Carter moved into scoring position with two out. Higgs drew a walk to load the bases, and Lara also collected a free pass to earn her second RBI of the contest. Hersey grounded into her only out of the game to end the threat.
Centenary led off its half of the third with back-to-back singles to chase Hugie from the circle in favor of Traci Moore. Emerald Doria, who had the inning's first single, moved to third on a fielder's choice by Micah Rhodes that left runners at the corners. Rhodes stole second, then Doria scored on a fielder's choice by Mango. Mango was thrown out trying to take second base on the play. The next batter, Allison McClain, was hit by a pitch. Centenary then put on the double steal, and McClain stayed out of harm's way long enough for Rhodes to score from third. When all was said and done, SFA's lead had been trimmed to 5-4.
But Moore worked the fourth inning without incident, and Carter came on in the fifth inning to close things out. She scattered three hits over three innings and recorded three strikeouts to earn the save. Moore was credited with the win.
The Ladyjacks added an insurance run in the sixth inning, when Hersey hit a two-out single up the middle. She advanced to second when Tullos reached on an error, then Heather Hebert came on to run for Hersey. Sydney Davis reached base on another error, and Hebert moved over to third. She would later score on a wild pitch.
In all, SFA put together 11 hits and played error-free in the field. The Ladyjacks will try to keep that momentum Saturday when they return home to play Texas State in the first two contests of a three-game Southland Conference set. Game 1 of Saturday's doubleheader is set to begin at 1 p.m.
- SFA -