April 3, 2013

No. 6 North Georgia Splits PBC Softball Doubleheader with Flagler

ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. – The sixth-ranked University of North Georgia (UNG) softball team completed its final road doubleheader of the regular-season by splitting a Peach Belt Conference (PBC) twinbill with Flagler College (FC). North Georgia took the first game 6-2 before dropping the second 10-4 at Flagler Field.

The split dropped the Saints from Dahlonega (31-10, 11-5 PBC) to fourth in the conference standings while Flagler (25-15, 6-8 PBC) moved to eighth in the standings with two weeks left in the regular-season.

Game One: #6 North Georgia 6, Flagler 2

UNG took an early 3-1 lead in the day's first game with a single run in the first inning and two more in the second before Flagler plated a run in the bottom of the second. Taylor Merritt, Tiffanie Burns and Megan May scored the first three runs of the game.

Kayla Minger and Ansley Phillips then gave UNG a 5-1 lead in the third frame as Minger homered before Phillips scored off a double by Merritt.

The two teams would swap single runs in the fifth inning with the fourth, sixth and seventh frames passing by scoreless.

North Georgia out hit Flagler 12-7 in the game with Merritt (3-4) leading all players at the plate. Only Merritt, Sarah Johnson and Flagler's Marissa Blake were able to record multiple hits in the game while Kim McMillan pushed two runs across the dish.

Melissa Dickie (10-4) pitched the complete game to secure the win off four strikeouts compared to giving up just one earned run, three walks and seven hits. Tinsley Smith (4-3) was saddled with the loss for Flagler in three innings of work that saw her give up nine hits, five runs and one walk.

Game Two: Flagler 10, #6 North Georgia 4

In the day's second game, Flagler jumped out to an early 6-0 lead in the first inning off just two hits and one error. It was a lead the Saints of St. Augustine never gave up despite sixth-ranked North Georgia making attempting a comeback spurred by three runs in the third.

McMillan scored first for North Georgia off an error by the Flagler shortstop before Minger ripped her second homer of the day, which also drove Karlie Gillam across the plate.

Flagler was able to stretch the lead back out to 7-3 with a single run in the fifth, a run that North Georgia matched in the top of the sixth frame before Flagler plated three final runs in the bottom of the inning to claim the 10-4 upset win.

North Georgia used all three pitchers on staff in the game, but it was freshman Courtney Poole (18-6) who was saddled with the loss in game-two in just two-thirds of an inning of work that saw her give up the first six runs, all earned. Kalyn Loverich (11-6) claimed the win in the circle for Flagler while pitching the complete game despite surrendering eight walks and seven hits.

North Georgia will return home to wrap up the regular-season with three home PBC doubleheaders. The Saints will first welcome Georgia Southwestern State University for a 2:00 p.m. twinbill at Haines & Carolyn Hill Stadium on Sunday, Apr. 7. North Georgia will hold a moment of silence prior to the games with the Hurricanes in memory of Dan "Super Fan" Davis.