GULF SHORES, Ala. (February 2, 2018) – Rollins opened the 2018 season with a pair of games at the Gulf Coast Invitational in Gulf Shores, Alabama. Rollins faced off against Delta State in the first contest dropping a 3-2 thriller in ten innings. The Tars then fell to Alabama-Huntsvillein game two, dropping another low scoring contest 3-1.
Game one quickly turned into a pitchers' duel. The Tars and the Lady Statesmen could each only manage one run through seven innings, and the game was pushed to extras. Both teams would battle in the extra frames, but Delta State would pull out a 3-2 win in 10 innings. Rollins fell behind early in the second game, giving up three runs in the first and were unable to scrap back into the game, falling to 0-2 on the young season.
HOW IT HAPPENED:
Game One (Delta State):
- The Lady Statesmen threatened in the first inning, but Abby Summers settled down to induce an inning ending line out to get out of a bases loaded jam.
- Both teams had chances early, but defenses prevailed, with Rollins stranding three and Delta State leaving five on
- Sarah Harrison tallied the game's first score, reaching on a error by the pitcher, and crossing the plate when Chandler Middlebrook reached on an error.
- Delta State found the equalizer in the sixth when a Kaitlyn Eaves single brought home Kelly Byrd.
- After one scoreless extra frame, the Lady Statesmen took the lead in the top of the ninth. The Tars would not go quietly however, as Abigail Sexton singled home Cynthia Whitty to keep the contest going.
- Delta State again put the pressure on Rollins in the 10th, scoring on a wild pitch, but this time the Tars could not find the tying run, dropping the opener.
Game Two (Alabama-Huntsville):
- Sarah Harrison again got the Tars on the board with a run in the first inning. She was driven in by a Sexton single to right center field.
- The Chargers responded quickly, putting three runs on the board in the bottom of the first. The rally started when Alabama-Huntsvilee was able to put a nrunner on after a dropped strikeout, after a walk, a triple sent two runs home. A sacrifice fly accounted for the third, putting the Tars in an early hole.
- Both pitchers settled into the game and the offences went scoreless for the remainder of the game.
- Rollins split the first two games of the Gulf South Invitational to begin their 2017 campaign.
- Rollins is now 7-2-1 in their last 10 season openers.
- Abby Summers game one performance was her first appearance with the Tars, and her 13 strikeouts was just three away from a tie for fifth in Rollins single game history.
- Michelle Frew is now 771-327-1 in her 22nd season at the helm of the Rollins softball program.
The Tars will continue play at the Gulf Coast Invitational tomorrow, February 3, with contests against West Alabama, at 10 a.m. and No. 11 Lee at 12:15 p.m.
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