LOOKOUT MOUNTAIN -- A combined shutout in game one helped the Covenant softball team to a doubleheader split with Emory & Henry on Friday afternoon on Lookout Mountain. Tyler Epes and Carsyn Stone combined to shutdown the visiting Wasps, 3-0, in game one of the twin-bill before Emory & Henry took game two 2-0.
It was the first meetings all-time between the programs and was a rescheduled doubleheader from the originally scheduled Feb. 17 contests that were wiped out due to weather. Covenant (15-17) is 8-4 at home on the year after the split.
Emory & Henry (17-3) saw its nine-game win streak snapped with the game one loss. The Wasps are receiving votes in the NFCA Top 25.
GAME ONE: Covenant 3, Emory & Henry 0
Epes (3-6) was very efficient in her outing as she threw 51 pitches in her five innings of work and scattered four hits with a walk and a strikeout. Epes used just five pitches total to face the first five batters for the Wasps to begin the game.
Offensively, Covenant was able to break through in the third inning. Carlin Labuzan singled to start the frame and Shannon Schmitt was hit by a pitch to put runners at first and second with nobody out. The next two hitters were retired but after a walk to Shade Epes, Faith Manning came through with a two-out single to center field that plated Schmitt. Shelby Ralston also tried to score on the base hit, but was thrown out at the plate by Emory & Henry center fielder Erin Anderson.
Holding that 1-0 lead into the sixth, Covenant picked up two insurance runs. Erika Mast singled to left field that brought home Jada Allmon, then Mast got caught between first and second and that enabled Manning to score ahead of a wild throw to make it 3-0.
Stone secured the win with a perfect seventh inning. The right-hander collected her first save of the season after going the final two innings and allowing just one baserunner.
Labuzan, Manning, and Mast were all 2-for-3 to help Covenant out-hit Emory & Henry 9-4. Schmitt went 1-for-2 with a run scored, while Allmon and Madalyn Ames also had a hit apiece.
Tiffany Cole (7-3) got the loss for Emory & Henry as she went six innings and allowed three runs on nine hits with two strikeouts. Four different players recorded a hit for Emory & Henry.
GAME TWO: Emory & Henry 2, Covenant 0
Two unearned runs were enough for Emory & Henry to come away with a doubleheader split after a 2-0 victory in game two.
Cris Gant struck out 10 batters over five innings, but defensive misplays hurt the Lady Scots in the loss. Gant (0-3) allowed two runs, both unearned, on three hits and had a season-high 10 punch-outs.
Emory & Henry took a 1-0 lead in the second inning without the benefit of a hit as two walks to begin the frame led to a double steal and a throwing error that allowed Kendall Varner to score giving the Wasps the lead. In the fifth inning, a dropped fly ball in center field with two outs led to pinch-runner Caitlyn Yates coming around to score to make it 2-0.
Covenant had just three hits off Emory & Henry starter Cameron Derr. Schmitt, Ralston, and Ames each had a hit, all singles, for the Lady Scots. Covenant's best chance to score came in the first when it loaded the bases with one out. However, Derr retired the next two hitters to end the inning. Derr (7-0) retired the final 10 hitters for the Lady Scots and had eight strikeouts
Joni Johnson tossed two scoreless and hitless innings in relief for Covenant.
Covenant will host Agnes Scott for a USA South doubleheader on Saturday. Senior Day activities will take place at 12 p.m., with the game following shortly afterward.
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