SAGU wins twice with late comebacks

Weekend Series with Langston Cancelled

IRVING, Texas  --  The second year softball team at Southwestern Assemblies of God University continued the inspiring start to their 2013 season with a thrilling sweep of a doubleheader on Tuesday night in Irving, Texas.

Playing a twi-light doubleheader against the University of Dallas, the Lady Lions rallied from behind twice in the last inning to defeat the Crusaders 7-6 and 10-9.

Head Coach Tim Grant’s young team, who went 2-28 in their inaugural season, have now won three games in a row to lift their record to 5-4.

After opening the season with three losses to Our Lady of the Lake University, SAGU travelled to Moore, Oklahoma. There, they took 3-of-4 from Hillsdale College.

On Friday they won 7-3 and 12-2, followed by a 9-4 loss on Saturday. They rebounded in a 9-4 triumph in the finale.

A year ago the team scored just 41 runs in 30 games. Through nine games this season they have crossed the plate 53 times.

Sophomore pitcher Shannen Davis-Nance (Enid, Ok / Kremlin-Hillsdale HS) picked up both wins on Monday, once as a starter, the other in relief.

The Lady Lions scheduled home series this weekend against Langston University (Okla) has been cancelled.

No make-up date has been announced. Since the three games are in the conference schedule, an attempt to play them will be made. There was also no clarification if weather played a part in the ruling, though the campus ballfield receiving a solid amount of rainfall over night on Tuesday.

GAME ONE: SAGU 7-6

The Lady Lions rallied for two runs in the top of the seventh inning, and then held off a rally by the Lady ‘Saders for a 7-6 victory.

Sophomore second baseman Theresa Ballard (Austin, Tx / Home School) drove in what turned out to be the winning run – which was scored by Kasey Poovey (Nevada, Tx / Community HS).

Tied at 5-5, Kelsey Coburn (Lewisville, Tx / Lewisville HS) started the rally with a single up the middle. She raced home when Blayr Huff (Keller, Tx / Liberty Christian) doubled with a shot down the leftfield line.

Poovey lined a single to right-center. Following a fielder’s choice that ended with Huff out at the plate, Ballard came to bat. Toting a .250 average, she poked a clutch single along the rightfield line that sent Poovey in to score for a 7-5 lead.

Nance, who started the game, opening the seventh by fanning the first batter. She was chased after a seeing-eye single through the left side and a double.

Ashley Abair (Kennedale, Tx / Kennedale HS) entered the game. She was greeted with ground ball that got through the right side, drawing UD to within a run.

With two runners aboard and one out, Abair buckled down. She coaxed the Crusaders’ clean-up batter to pop up in foul territory. Catcher Heather Wyatt (Lake Jackson, Tx / Brazoswood HS) made the grab.

Abair ended the game by striking out Dallas’ #5 hitter in the line-up, swinging. It earned her a save to go along with a win she picked up against Hillsdale.

SAGU outhit UD, 14-10, and made a lone error.

Coburn led the attack with a 3-for-4 effort that included three runs batted in. Poovey duplicated her 3-for-4 showing while Huff and Wyatt each contributed 2-for-4 games.

SAGU scored five unanswered runs to take a 5-2 lead into the bottom of the sixth.

The hosts then knotted the score with a three-spot on four singles and a two-run triple. Nance got out of a two-out jam by striking out a pinch-hitter with runners on second and third base.

Trailing 2-0 early, the Lady Lions tacked on single runs in the second and third.

Huff doubled to center and was driven in when Nance stroked a single up the middle. In the third frame, Feliciana Maldonado (Victorville, Cal / Victor Valley) singled with two outs, stole second and came home when Coburn lined an RBI hit to center.

Deadlocked at 2-2 in the fifth, Wyatt jolted the Crusaders with a leadoff double. Shortstop McKinlee Stokes (Pampa, Tx / Pampa HS) beat out an infield hit. After Stokes swiped second, both runners were knocked in on Coburn’s single to center.

SAGU added a run in the sixth. Wyatt pounded a two-out gapper to left-center for a double. She scampered across the dish when Cassandra Mata’s (Crystal City, Tx / Crystal City HS) grounder was misplayed by the shortstop.

Nance got the win by going six and one-third innings. She was charged with nine hits and six runs, though only four were earned. The righthander struck out two and did not issue a walk.

GAME TWO: SAGU 10-9

Fresh off one comeback, the team played their first night game. Just like the first game, these ‘Cats played like they had nine lives.

SAGU scored four times in the top of the seventh inning for a 10-9 win over the University of Dallas.

After surrendering four to the Crusaders in their half of the sixth, SAGU countered with an impressive rally in the top of the last.

With one down, Poovey singled to left, then scored when Nance unloaded a two-bagger to center. Wyatt, who is heating up after a slow start to the season, ripped a shot past third to bring up Abair.

The freshman tagged a deep double to left that drew chalk and a pair of runs to tie the score at nine apiece. An error in centerfield on the next batter advanced Abair to third.

Stokes grounded to short, which forced Mata at second. The relay to first was late, allowing Abair to score the lead run. A flyout to right ended the rally.

Nance, who entered the game in relief of Abair in the sixth, retired the side in order to pick up the win. She got the leadoff batter on a pop-up, and the next batter grounded out to Stokes. The game ended on a line-drive to right that was snared by Poovey.

SAGU was credited with 15 hits, seven more than the U-of-D.

Stokes, who jumpstarts the order, was 4-for-5 with a run batted in as well as three runs scored. Nance blasted two doubles and went 3-for-4 with 3 RBI.

Abair and Poovey racked up a pair of hits, with Abair and Coburn totaling two ribbies.

An indicator that SAGU was going to be bringing it came in the very first inning. Stokes singled and moved to second on a sacrifice bunt.

Coburn, in the spirit of the TV show “Survivor,voted the next pitch off the island. She crushed the offering well beyond the fencing for a two-run homer.

The Lady Lions fell behind 5-3 after three, before taking a 6-5 advantage in the fifth.

Nance doubled in Poovey in the fourth, then tallied twice in the fifth. Coburn and Nance knocked in two baserunners.

Abair went the first five frames, allowing six hits and six walks, which were turned into eight runs, six of them earned.

Nance collected the win with two innings of work. She was touched for an earned run and two hits. She walked one batter and whiffed two.

Contact: Mark “Link” Warde, SAGU Sports Information Director, at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or at 469-658-2847.
 

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