DAHLONEGA, GA – The 2nd-ranked North Georgia softball team suffered a walk-off defeat on Sunday afternoon as 3rd-ranked Valdosta State scored a pair of 7th-inning runs to come from behind and shock the Saints 5-4 in the Captain D's Classic at Haines & Carolyn Hill Stadium.
The Saints drop back-to-back games for the first time this season, falling to 22-5 overall, while the Blazers improve to 10-2 on the year, ending the Captain D's Classic at 3-1 for the weekend.
Valdosta State was the designated home team in the game and scored single runs in each of the first two innings to race out to an early lead.
Both teams traded runs in the third inning as Ansley Williams drilled a double to right-center to cut the Blazers' lead to 2-1, but VSU answered with a run of their own in the bottom of the inning to extend the lead right back to a pair.
The Saints knotted the score in the fifth inning when Katherine Martin doubled home a run with a double down the left field line, and Callie Fernandez followed and legged out an infield single, sending Martin racing home from second and making it 3-3.
North Georgia took their first lead of the game in the sixth inning, using another base knock from Williams, this time a single up the middle to send Victoria St. Clair home and give the Saints a 4-3 lead.
They took a one-run lead into the last of the seventh, but the Blazers would have the final word as they loaded the bases before Melessa Jackson smoked a single through the right side, sending two runs racing home and giving Valdosta a 5-4 walk-off victory.
Krysten Connelly got the start for North Georgia, but Sarah Phillips came on for the final two innings and suffered the loss, falling to 9-3 on the season. She allowed two runs on three hits, while adding five strikeouts.
The Saints will close the Captain D's Classic on Sunday afternoon with a 4:00 p.m. contest against the 4th-ranked University of Alabama-Huntsville Chargers at Haines & Carolyn Hill Stadium.