GREENSBORO, N.C. – Appalachian State University softball dropped two games on the second day of the Southern Conference Tournament, ending its record-setting 2013 season. The Apps fell to No. 4 UNCG 3-0 in game one before falling to No. 2 College of Charleston 2-0 in 10 innings in the elimination game on Thursday night in Greensboro, N.C.
With the loss, the Mountaineers close their season with a 31-22 overall record, a 17-7 SoCon record and an 18-0 home record.
Game One: No. 4 UNCG 3, No. 1 App State 0
A leadoff walk turned into a scoring opportunity for UNCG in the bottom of the second inning as Heather Robb walked and advanced to second on a bunt single from Tatiana Alcala. With no outs and runners on first a second Danielle Vega laid down a sacrifice bunt putting runners in scoring position for pinch hitter Toni MacReynolds.
After fouling off several pitches and reaching a full count, MacReynolds hit a shallow single to right field that allowed Robb to cross the plate and give the Spartans a 1-0 lead with one out.
UNCG pushed a second run across the plate when Lindsay Thomas hit a deep sacrifice fly to the left field fence, scoring Alcala.
The Spartans continued to add to their lead in the bottom of the third inning when Lindsay Thomas led off the inning with a double to right center and advanced to third on a wild pitch. A two out single through the left side of the field from Robb plated Thomas, extending the UNCG lead to 3-0.
Appalachian threatened to score in the top of the sixth inning when senior Allie Cashion saw four straight balls and Lindsay Loudermilk was hit by a pitch to put runners on first and second. A groundout from freshman Ellie Manriquez put runners on second and third with two out for pinch hitter Alex Sohl. Sohl swung at the first pitch, grounding out to the short stop and ending the inning before the Apps were able to push any runs across the plate.
Spartan pitcher Raeanne Hanks kept the App State offense quiet all game long as Manriquez and Caroline Rogers notched the only two Mountaineers hits.
Starting pitcher Alissa Schoelkopf (20-11) suffered the loss in the circle, pitching six innings while allowing five hits.
Game Two: No. 2 College of Charleston 2, App State 0
With one out in the bottom of the third inning, Sarah Warnock knocked a double down the left field line and advanced to third on a throwing error by the College of Charleston left fielder. A strikeout and a fly out to center field retired the final two outs of the inning before App State could push a run across the plate, leaving the contest scoreless heading into the top of the fourth.
The Cougar offense got started in the top half of the fourth inning when two singles and a walk loaded the bases, but a hard hit single back to Schoelkopf would end the threat before College of Charleston was able to score.
The Apps were retired in order in the bottom of the seventh inning, sending the game into extra innings for the second time in the tournament for the Mountaineers.
College of Charleston’s back-to-back singles with two outs and a wild pitch put runners on second and third for the Cougars in the top of the eighth inning, but an easy pop up to Schoelkopf would retire the final out before a run could score.
The Apps were retired in order for two straight innings before Loudermilk drove a single off the center field wall with two outs, but a line drive to the shortstop made the final out of the inning as the contest headed into international tie breaker innings.
A wild pitch with one out would move the Cougar base runner to third base in the top of the 10th inning before a two-run home run over the right field wall broke open the scoreboard and gave CofC the 2-0 lead over App State as the Cougars hung on for the win.
Warnock, Heichen, Loudermilk and Cynthia Gomez notched all the hits for the Appalachian offense, as the Black and Gold were out-hit 9-4 by the Cougars.
Schoelkopf (20-12) pitched all 10 innings for the Apps with four strikeouts. The sophomore pitched two 10 inning games for the Apps on the weekend, going 1-1 in the outings.
The loss ends the record setting 2013 season for Appalachian State as it concluded its season with a program-best 31 wins and an NCAA Division I best 18-0 home record. App State broke several single-season team records including; doubles (64), RBI (209) and on-base percentage (.353).