NASHVILLE, Tenn. – The Tigers received a great pitching performance from Amber Galyon to earn a split with Tennessee Tech on Sunday at Tiger Field. The freshman pitcher earned her first win of her career as Tennessee State defeated the Golden Eagles 6-1 in the first of two Ohio Valley Conference games. TTU needed just six innings to claim a 10-0 win in game two.
TSU is now 8-12 on the season and 1-2 after the opening weekend of conference play. TTU improved to 13-11, 2-1 in the OVC.
Galyon was faced 11 batters and was touched for five hits, a walk and one run over the first two innings in game one. The Aqua, Tenn. native found a groove allowing just two hits and three base runners over the final five innings, while facing 18 batters.
Galyon (1-4) ran into trouble in the first inning as Anji Sakamoto and Hannah Eldridge opened with back-to-back singles. The first-year hurler would get help from her teammates to escape the opening frame with Tech’s lone run.
Alyssa Richards drove a ball to right center, plating Sakamoto. The defense stood tall on the drive, as Courtney Gearlds would retrieve the ball at the fence and hit first baseman Lauren Dreitlein who threw a strike to Lindsey Burgess to cut down Eldridge at the plate.
TTU looked to revive the first with a walk, but Burgess came up firing to second base to pick off Richards who had wondered off second base.
The Tigers would pick up a run of its own in the bottom of the first as Gearlds would get things started with the first of her three hits in the game. The sophomore proceeded to steal second and move to third on a Kailey Richard sacrifice bunt. Dreitlein grounded out to Golden Eagles pitcher, Hannah Weaver, allowing Gearlds to cross home plate.
TSU added a run in the second as Tayler Shimizu dropped a hit into right center, chasing home Burgess, who had reached on a one-out walk.
In the third, TSU increased its lead to 3-1 as Joselyn Yates hit a ball just inside the right field line. Richard, who reached on a double to right center, came home on the Yates hit to give the Tigers a two rubn advantage.
Gearlds would get things going again in the fifth as she repeated her feat from the first, with a single and swiping second. She would score three batters later as Kate Morris ripped a double off the fence in left field. Yates followed with her own double to left center allowing Morris to touch home, making the score 5-1.
The Tigers picked up its final run as Gearlds ripped a triple to the right. Carionna Hassell trotted in from third to give TSU its final margin of victory.
The rubber match of the series followed the same pattern as the first game of the series on Saturday. Danielle Liberatore (8-5) was in complete control at the beginning as she retired the first 10 batters she faced.
The Tigers were down 7-0 before they could manage a base runner off the Golden Eagles pitcher. Liberatore finished the game with eight strikeouts opposed to five hits and a walk.
Taylor Green took the loss for the Tigers and is now 5-5 as she surrendered three runs, one earned off three hits and two walks in 1.2 innings.
Jasmine Matchen tossed the final 4.1 innings, but TTU was able to add another seven runs, five earned.
The Tech 11 hit attack was led by Eldridge, who finished the game 3-for-3 with a walk, three runs scored a home run and three runs batted in.
The Tigers will step away from OVC play to take on Lipscomb in a non-conference double header on Wednesday evening. First pitch is set for 4:30pm at Tiger Field. Live stats and an audio broadcast for the game can be found on tsutigers.com.