MILLEDGEVILLE, Ga. – The sixth-ranked University of North Georgia softball team saw its seven-game win streak come to an end Thursday evening as the Saints dropped the first game of a Peach Belt Conference doubleheader 5-4 to Georgia College at the Peeler Complex. However, the Saints bounced back in the night's second game with a 4-0 victory.
With the split, North Georgia (26-7, 6-2 PBC) slips into a tie for second in the conference with No. 20 Columbus State University while the Bobcats (26-12, 10-4 PBC) move to fourth. Georgia College has already recorded more conference wins this season than they had all of last season (9).
Game-one: Georgia College 5, #6 North Georgia 4
In game-one, North Georgia was able to get out to a 3-1 lead in the first three innings as sophomore hurler Melissa Dickie had a no-hitter through the first three innings.
North Georgia received runs early from Taylor Merritt and Katherine Martin. Merritt scored in both the first and third innings off RBI singles by Karlie Gillam and Kayla Minger with Martin also scoring on the single from Minger in the third.
But the Bobcats were able to match the Saints with two more funs in the bottom of the fourth, tying the score once more off two hits.
After North Georgia took a 4-3 lead in the top of the sixth when Katie Garrett stole home, Kristen Humphries took the lead back for Georgia College for good with a two-run homer, handing the Bobcats the eventual victory despite being out-hit by the Saints 10-3.
Dani Gallucci (9-4) struck out four batters in seven innings to claim the win for Georgia College while Melissa Dickie (7-3) accepted the loss for North Georgia with a pair of strikeouts.
Game-two: #6 North Georgia 4, Georgia College 0
Game-two proved to be the opposite of game-one early on as both pitchers, Courtney Poole for North Georgia and Marisa Boyette for Georgia College, threw excellent games. Both freshmen, Poole and Boyette dueled late into the game with both giving up just one hit through the first five innings of play.
With the game stretching on, Martin broke through first for North Georgia with a double to no-man's land behind the shortstop, scoring McMillan and giving the sixth-ranked Saints a 1-0 lead in the sixth before McMillan blew the game open with a three-run home run to center field.
Poole (16-4) recorded the shutout for North Georgia, recording eight strikeouts while giving up just two hits and one walk. Boyette (12-5) also went the full distance, striking out nine batters and giving up just one earned run and one walk.
The weekend schedule for North Georgia has been altered slightly due to the threat of weather. The nationally-ranked Saints will still travel to Florence, S.C. on Saturday, Mar. 23 where Francis Marion University awaits for a 1:00 p.m. PBC doubleheader; however, Sunday's twinbill at the University of North Carolina Pembroke has been postponed with a new date and time to be announced later.