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The Barton College softball team slightly bolstered its hopes of securing one of eight berths in the NCAA Division II Conference Carolinas tournament by splitting a doubleheader with Southern Wesleyan University on the Jeffries Field diamond Saturday afternoon.
The Lady Bulldogs seized the opener 3-1 behind the two-hit pitching of junior Hannah Jones but, in the second game, were shut out until the final inning in bowing to 2-1.
Barton emerged at 5-13 in the conference and 19-25 overall. The Lady Warriors stand 3-13 and 8-33, respectively.
The Lady Bulldogs stand 9th among 11 conference teams, with Southern Wesleyan in 10th. But in terms of tournament seeding, Barton occupies the No. 8 spot with Emmanuel College ineligible for postseason play. Barton has two league games remaining with archrival Mount Olive, while Southern Wesleyan has four conference tests left and could conceivably overtake the Lady Bulldogs for the final tournament spot.
In the win, Barton forged a 3-0 lead after three innings, while, in the circle, Jones allowed the two hits and one walk while striking out eight in evening her record at 9-9.
Sophomore shortstop Sierra Hearp batted in all three Barton runs. Hearp rapped a two-run single in the first, scoring freshman Jordan Blake, who had singled; and Jones, who drew a walk. Singles by sophomore Taylor Martin, junior Samantha Santmyers and Hearp produced the Lady Bulldogs’ third-inning run.
Hearp wound up with two of Barton’s seven hits.
But in the second game, the Lady Bulldogs could scratch out only four singles against Southern Wesleyan pitcher Hunter Hoskins (8-19).
Score by innings:
So. Wesleyan 000 010 0 — 1
Barton 201 000 x — 3
WP-Hannah Jones (9-9) 7 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 8 SO. LP-Josie Edwards (0-9) 4 IP, 7 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 1 BB, 0 SO.
LEADING HITTERS — Southern Wesleyan: Megan New 1-2, 2B, RBI; Becca White 1-3; Barton: Sierra Hearp 2-3, 3 RBI; Brittany Jacobs 1-2, Jordan Blake 1-3, Taylor Martin 1-2, Samantha Santmyers 1-2, Nohealani Burden 1-3.
Score by innings:
So. Wesleyan 000 200 0 — 2
Barton 000 000 1 — 1
WP-Hunter Hoskins (8-19) 7 IP, 4 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 2 SO. LP-Ashton Pegram (2-2) 3 IP, 5 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 1 BB, 0 SO.
LEADING HITTERS — Southern Wesleyan: Megan New 2-2, 2 RBI; Lexi Thompson 1-4, 2B; Makaila Irby 1-2, 2B; Barton: Jessica Onega 1-2, Taylor Martin 1-3, Sierra Hearp 1-3, Taylor Freeman 1-3.