TIGERS DROP SEASON FINALE, ELIMINTED FROM POSTSEASON PLAY
NASHVILLE, Tenn.-Tennessee State could not overcome a four-run third inning by UT Martin and lost an opportunity to advance to the Ohio Valley Conference tournament. Skyhawks pitcher Ashley Myatt scattered five hits and two walks, keeping the Tigers at bay in the 4-0 win. UTM loaded the bases with one out in the third inning off senior starter Candace Hildebrand. The Tigers looked to be in good shape as Laura Roberts hit a come-backer to Hildebrand. But the throw was in the dirt and Ashley Benbow crossed home before senior catcher Erin Finneran could come up with the ball. Megan Williams followed with a ground ball to Bridget Metzger. The freshman shortstop's throw was off line and pulled Finneran off the plate allowing the Skyhawks to take a 2-0 lead. Megan Van Arsdale hit a sacrifice fly to deep center field to bring home another run. On the play, Finneran threw an errant ball to third in attempt to get Laura Roberts. The ball would get far enough away from third baseman Jennifer Gregory to allow Roberts to increase the score to 4-0. Myatt (9-8) stayed out of trouble until the seventh inning. Freshman Chelsea Brown led off the inning with a single through the left side. Three batters later freshman Tamara Perkins drove a ball to deep center field for a double and put Tigers on second and third. Myatt settled down and got sophomore Melanie Cruz to pop up to first base to end the game. Hildebrand (17-13) suffered the loss pitching 2.2 innings surrendering four hits and a walk. Junior Amanda Vaught threw the final 4.1 innings issuing just two hits and struck out four. Perkins led the way offensively for the Tigers as she registered two hits for the fourth consecutive game. In the process she extended her hitting streak to eleven games. Cruz, Brown and senior Diana Clifford each notched a hit as the Tigers closed out the season. TSU concluded their most successful season in school history finishing 34-23, 11-15 in the OVC. The Tigers missed the tournament as a result of a series loss to Austin Peay earlier in the season, as the two times ended up with identical conference records.