April 30, 2013

Golden Eagles keep playoff hopes alive: Softball splits OVC doubleheader


MOREHEAD, Ky. -- Tennessee Tech's hopes of an Ohio Valley Conference softball tournament bid are still alive as the Golden Eagles split a conference doubleheader at Morehead State Tuesday afternoon. Tech fell in the first end of the twinbill, 4-2, but won the nightcap 6-5, improving to 22-26 and 11-11 in the OVC. 

Tech fended off a second Morehead State comeback in the nightcap. Brittney Spalding broke a four-inning dry spell in fashion. The senior blasted the team's winning run in the top of the seventh inning, on a home run over the right field fence.  Spalding collected three hits on the day, two doubles and the winning home run. 

The Golden Eagles bounced back from the earlier loss, scoring four runs in the first inning to take a 4-0 lead. Taylor Ketchum (15-10) pitched 4.1 innings before Erica Tuck took the circle and picked up her second save in her past three outings. 

Ketchum gave up a home run in the first, but retired the next seven of eight batters she faced to keep the Golden Eagles' 5-1 lead intact. Morehead State again used a big effort late in the game to make a comeback. The Eagles scored three unearned runs in the bottom of the fourth inning to sneak back into the contest. 

Brittney Spalding's home run sealed the deal in the seventh, putting Tech up 6-4, and nullifying Morehead State's single run in the seventh. MSU had the bases loaded before Tuck worked out of the jam.

Melody Christian extended her hitting streak to 15 games going 3-for-5 at the plate. Kendall Hooper also had three hits, while fellow junior Kayla Floyd contributed two hits on the day. Cortney Fry collected two RBI on her lone hit in the second game while Chanelle Spalding and Olivia Bennett each had one hit as well. 

The Golden Eagles return to action Saturday and Sunday when they host Jacksonville State. The team will celebrate its four seniors throughout the weekend. Tech will host a doubleheader Saturday and play a single game Sunday, both days kicking off at 1 p.m.