NASHVILLE, Tenn. – The Tennessee State softball team opened the home portion of its schedule as they host the Tiger Classic. TSU secured a 3-1 victory over Northern Kentucky before falling to Evansville 9-3.
In game one, the Tigers took advantage of a pair of UNK miscues to score three unearned runs and rode the arm of freshman pitcher Lauren Powell to grab their second win of the season. Powell (1-2) scattered five hits and five walks as she surrendered just one run.
The Tigers would give Powell all she would need in the first inning as Courtney Gearlds and Danica Gleason crossed home plate on a pair of wild pitches. Gearlds reached on an error and stole second to get into scoring position. Gleason followed on a walk and joined Gearlds in moving up 60-feet on a sacrifice bunt by Abi Stephens.
The 2-0 lead would hold until the Norse scratched a run in the fifth to get within a run. The Tigers would extend the lead back to two an inning later as Kim Trice delivered a pinch hit single into right field to plate Joselynn Yates, who reached on a UNK error to open the frame.
In game two, the Purple Aces jumped to an early 1-0 lead on a home run from the leadoff hitter, Michael Luckett. The Tigers stormed back with two runs in the bottom of the opening stanza to take a 2-1 lead.
Gearlds, Yates and Lindsey Burgess loaded the base paths with walks and would get on the scoreboard on a fielder’s choice by Lauren Dreitlein that allowed Gearlds to score when the Evansville catcher mishandled a play at the plate. A couple pitches later, Yates would race home on the second wild pitch of the inning giving the Tigers the advantage.
The Purple Aces would bust the game open in the third inning by sending 13 batters to the plate. EU would total seven runs on four hits, four walks and two hit batters to take an 8-2 lead.
TSU scored its final run of the game in the bottom of the third on yet, another wild pitch. Gearlds scored for the second time in the game, third on the day, to make the score 8-3. Evansville would get the run back in the sixth, producing the 9-3 victory.
The Tigers moved to 2-5 on the season and will get day two started with back-to-back games with ULM at 11:15 a.m. and East Tennessee State at 1:30 p.m. Admission to all games are free.
Notes: TSU wore their blue jerseys with white pants … Courtney Gearlds moved into the top 10 at TSU for runs by scoring three times and now has 49 in her career … Gearlds is tied with Brittany Webb and Jalisa Bradley who both played for the Tigers from 2008-11 … Gearlds stole two bases versus Northern Kentucky to move her into fourth on the all-time list, passing Jennifer Culberson (2009-10) … freshman pitcher Lauren Powell earned her first collegiate win allowing one run in a complete game effort
Tiger Classic Day One Results:
Game 1 – ULM 14, Northern Kentucky 10
Game 2 – East Tennessee State 1, Butler 0
Game 3 – ULM 5, Butler 2
Game 4 – Tennessee State 3, Northern Kentucky 1
Game 5 – Evansville 9, Tennessee State 3
Game 6 – Evansville 3, East Tennessee State 0