DURANT, OKLA.- The East Central University softball team picked up two wins at Southeastern Oklahoma State to take the Great American Conference series 3-1. The Tigers took game one 3-2 and then earned a 6-4 win in nine innings in night cap.
The Tigers (25-22, 16-19 GAC) saw four players hit over .425 for the day, with junior Alyssa Taylor (Mvskoke Creek Nation) leading the way with a .667 average, four hits and an RBI. Sophomore Breecia Crawford added a .429 average, three hits, two runs and two RBIs.
Senior Kelbie Crelia earned the win in game one, throwing a complete game, allowing two hits and two runs, while striking out three. She then added a save in game two, throwing the ninth inning and faced just three batters.
ECU will now get ready for a four-game GAC series against Southern Nazarene this weekend. The series is currently set for April 21-22, but may change due to inclement weather expected in the area on Friday. This weekend’s second set of games will be the annual Senior Day, where the Tigers will honor four seniors.
East Central 3, Southeastern 2
The Tigers started a little slow in the opening game, allowing the Savage Storm (16-28, 10-24 GAC) to earn a run in the bottom of the first for the 0-1 disadvantage.
It took a little while for the ECU offense to start, but the Tigers were able to tie the game at 1 in the third. Taylor started in the inning with a single to center and was advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt by junior Claresha Clemons.
Taylor was then pinch ran for by redshirt sophomore Angel Johnson. During the next batter SE tried to pick Johnson off at second, but the ball was thrown into center field and it allowed her to score.
ECU then took the lead for good in the fourth. Freshman Jaclyn Willis started the inning with a single and was sent home when Crawford hit her third home run of the season for the 3-1 lead.
The Savage Storm tried to make a come-back in the sixth, but were only able to garner one run for the 3-2 final.
ECU 6, Southeastern 4 (9)
Must like game one, Southeastern took an early 0-1 lead after the first inning.
And again it wasn’t until the third that the Tigers were able to get on the board, tying things up again at one. After the first out, senior Haley Hyatt reached due to an error and then advanced to second on a wild pitch. That put her in scoring position when Taylor hit a single just out of the reach of the short stop.
However, this game it was the Savage Storm that took the lead in the fourth, scoring two runs to go up 1-3.
ECU got back within one in the fifth (2-3). Sophomore Ellanee Allison started things with a one-out single to left. She was followed on base on a double from freshman Nikki Herrin. Southeastern then loaded the bases with an intentional walk to Taylor. That allowed a run to score when Clemons hit into a fielder’s choice.
The Tigers kept up the pressure and take a 4-3 lead in the top of seventh. After the first out, Taylor singled up the middle, Clemons hit into a fielder choice for the second out, Crawford singled to left and sophomore Mariah Ewy was walked to load the bases.
Willis then earned an RBI by drawing a walk to keep the bases loaded and tie the game at three. Sophomore Madison Thompson was then walked to give ECU the lead (4-3) and leave the bases loaded.
Southeastern was then able to tie the game at four in the bottom of the inning to force extra innings.
Both teams had runners in scoring position in the eighth, but the game remained knotted at four until the top of the ninth when the Tigers took the lead, 6-4.
Ewy started the inning with a single up the middle, but was out on the next play when Willis hit into a fielder’s choice. Redshirt sophomore Aundrea Hamric then earned a triple to right field after a slip in the grass by the Southeastern right fielder to score the first run. The second run was then scored when Allison singled up the middle.
ECU then sent the first three Savage Storm batters back to the dug out to hold on for the win.