Ill. - Northern Kentucky University freshmen pitchers Amanda Smith
and Candace White combined on a clutch performance against No. 24
Southern Indiana in an elimination game at the Great Lakes Valley
Conference Tournament on Saturday.
and allowed just two runs to the hard-hitting Screaming Eagles,
while White earned her first career save in a 3-2 NKU victory. The
Norse improved to 38-18 and will meet Lewis in the loser’s
bracket final at 5 p.m. (CDT).
out to a 2-0 lead in the first inning as Sarah King and Smith each
had run-scoring singles. Southern Indiana made it 2-1 in the bottom
of the fifth on Krista Nugent’s RBI single.
its lead to 3-1 in the sixth inning when Katybeth Coode scored from
second base on an attempted sacrifice bunt by Kara Lorenz that Southern
Indiana first baseman Jennifer Mullikin overran and turned into
an RBI single.
Nikki Nichols cut the
NKU lead to 3-2 in the bottom of the sixth with an RBI single off
Smith to center field. At that point, Norse head coach Kathy Stewart
brought in White from the bullpen with runners on first and second
and Nugent at the plate.
Nugent struck out looking
to end the threat. In the bottom of the seventh, White allowed a
one-out single to Kathy Wood, but she retired the next two batters
to notch the save. Lorenz made a running catch of Audra Lindenschmidt’s
blooper to center for the final out.
Smith improved to 22-10
this season, and she added three hits at the plate. The 22 wins
are the most ever by an NKU freshman pitcher.
King and Rachele Vogelpohl
each had two hits for NKU, which stranded nine base runners. Southern
Indiana (37-16) left eight runners on base.
NKU is ranked
No. 6 in the latest NCAA Division II Great Lakes Region poll. The
winner of the GLVC Tournament receives an automatic berth in the
NCAA Division II Tournament.