NASHVILLE, Tenn. – The FGCU softball team wrapped up its final road trip of the season in Nashville, Tenn. on Saturday afternoon, dropping both ends of a doubleheader at first-place Lipscomb. The Eagles lost game one, 4-1, before dropping the second game, 6-0. Lauran Ziegler (Palm Bay, Fla.) and Jessica Gary (Naples, Fla.) each tallied a pair of hits on the day.
With the losses, the Blue and Green fall to 22-28 overall and 10-8 in conference, while Lipscomb improves to 37-9, 14-2 in the A-Sun.
In game one, the Lady Bisons opened the scoring in the first inning, as Courtney Billington singled home Lauren Dortwegt, giving Lipscomb a 1-0 lead after an inning.
Lipscomb added three more tallies in the third inning (4-0), scoring two runs on an error by catcher Brittany Baker (Summerfield, Fla.).
FGCU got on the scoreboard in the fifth inning, cutting the deficit to 4-1. Nicole Boswell (Jacksonville, Fla.) drew a one-out walk and moved to second on a sacrifice bunt from Baker. Ziegler followed with a bunt single, moving Boswell to third base. Gary drove in the run with a base hit, scoring Boswell. Courtney Platt (Greenville, Ohio) followed with a walk that loaded the bases with two outs, but Chelsea Yates (Boynton Beach, Fla.) struck out to end the inning.
Neither side threatened over the final two frames, and Lipscomb held on for a 4-1 win.
Catherine McDaniel (Melbourne, Fla.) pitched a six-inning complete game, taking the loss to fall to 10-13 on the year. The junior allowed four runs on seven hits, walking two and striking out one.
Ziegler went 1-for-3 with a walk and a stolen base in game one, while Gary was 2-for-3 with a double and an RBI.
In the second game, both starting pitchers were sharp early as only one runner made it past first base for either team through the first three innings.
Lipscomb would get the bats going in the fourth inning, batting around and scoring six times to open up a 6-0 lead. Abby Keese connected for a solo home run to get the scoring started. After Stephanie Sullivan (Venice, Fla.) came on to relieve Kelci Breaux (Okeechobee, Fla.) with two outs, Breanna Thurman drew a bases-loaded walk to make it 2-0. Whitney Kiihnl followed with a bunt single that led to a pair of runs scoring on an error by Boswell. Dortwegt then singled, plating two more runs to extend the lead to 6-0 through four innings.
The Eagles generated their best scoring chance of the game in the seventh inning, loading the bases with one out. But Boswell hit into a double play to end the game, giving the Lady Bisons a 6-0 victory.
Breaux took the loss, dropping to 8-9 on the season. The junior gave up four runs (two earned) over 3.2 innings, surrendering four hits and two walks while striking out two. Sullivan allowed two runs on five hits and a walk in 2.1 innings of relief.
Ziegler, Platt, and Erin Olson (Naples, Fla.) all went 1-for-3 in game two, while Baker was 1-for-2.
The Eagles land back at home for their final doubleheader of the season on Saturday, April 24, when they host Mercer. As it is the final home game of the year, seniors Lauran Ziegler, Jessica Gary, and Hayley O’Mara will be honored in between the two games. First pitch for game one is set for 2 p.m. at the FGCU Softball Complex.