published Monday, March 18th, 2013

UTC softball drops series at Furman

The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga softball team lost its opening Southern Conference series of the season by losing the final game 9-1 in five innings Sunday at Furman. Furman (11-13, 2-4 SoCon) jumped on top quickly with three runs in the third inning and five runs in the second, and the Lady Mocs (15-14, 1-2) could only push across one run on a sacrifice fly by shortstop Alyssa Taylor in the fourth inning to score third baseman Sarah Beth Roberts. UTC lost despite out hitting the Paladins 9-6, but four errors led to seven unearned Furman runs. Freshman catcher Anyssa Robles by going 3-for-3, and seniors Kasey Tydingco and Sara Poteat each had two hits. UTC starter Kaisey Carson took the loss after she was unable to record an out to start the game.

• Courtney Waggoner was 2-for-3 with two RBIs, Jenni Jobe was 2-for-3 and scored twice and Morgan Lane had two hits, two RBIs and two runs as Covenant College won 9-2 in the first game of its softball doubleheader Saturday at Salem College. Reigning Great South Athletic Conference pitcher of the week Cori Hilt allowed five hits and one earned run. She also pitched the second game, when Chandler Shepherd went 2-for-3 but the Lady Scots (2-14) lost 6-0.

• Berry College completed a four-game Southern Athletic Association softball sweep at Sewanee by beating the Tigers 8-0 and 17-0 in Sunday's doubleheader. The Tigers managed only three hits, but former Ooltewah player Abby Daniels boosted Berry in the sweep. She went 2-for-4 with a home run and two RBIs in the first game, and she had three hits and scored three runs with another pair of RBIs in the second game.

Basketball

• When Lee University from Cleveland and Cumberland University from Lebanon, Tenn., meet tonight at 6 in the first semifinal of the 2013 NAIA Division I women's basketball tournament, they will match 33-2 records and the fact both were seeded No. 2 in their quadrants and beat top seeds to get to the final four. Both top-ranked Freed-Hardeman and Westmont from California in the 8 p.m. semifinal were No. 1 seeds. Not only are Lee, Cumberland and Freed-Hardeman all from Tennessee, but all used to be together in the TranSouth Athletic Conference. Cumberland, which won this year's Mid-South tournament title in the Frankfort (Ky.) Convention Center where the national tournament is being played, was the national runner-up in 2007 in its one previous semifinal appearance. Lee, riding a 16-game winning streak after defeating the defending national champion Saturday, lost in the semifinals in 2010 with current seniors Brooke Hamby and Julia Zimmerman on the team, and coach Marty Rowe also made the final four in his final year at Brescia in 2004. In Sunday's team news conference in Frankfort, Rowe said, "This is the best group of leaders I've ever had," and Hamby said that after the Lady Flames' last loss (Jan. 26) to Southern Polytechnic, "we were just angry and we took revenge and don't want to stop until we get the national championship." This is Lee's last year in the NAIA before moving to NCAA Division II, and the Lady Flames are 0-8 all-time against Cumberland, but they already have a program record for wins.

Baseball

• Lee University beat visiting Emmanuel 5-0 and 9-3 in Southern States baseball Saturday, lifting the NAIA's third-ranked Flames to 23-6 overall and 12-3 in the league. Jose Samayoa and Andy Hillis combined to pitch a three-hitter with 10 strikeouts in the first game, when Lee scored all its runs in the sixth inning, Mark Silva driving in two and Brady Renner, Derrick Pitts and Chris Avey adding one RBI each. Avey and Danny Canela each was 2-for-3 in the game. Brandon Rader was 2-for-3 with three runs scored in the rematch, when Corey Davis and Jordan Stewart each homered and matched Pitts with two RBIs.

• The Cleveland State baseball team concluded its weekend TCCAA series at Dyersburg by splitting a doubleheader on Saturday. Dyersburg won the first game 6-4, but the Cougars bounced back to win the second game 2-0. Evan Speicher gave Cleveland state and early lead with a two-run double in the third inning, but Dyersburg answered with runs in their next three turns at the plate for the win. Stephen Collum and Colby Harmon each had two hits in the loss. In the second game, starting pitcher Thomas Huddleston held Dyersburg to two hits for the complete-game win, and Keith Buckhault went 2-for-2 with and RBI.

Lacrosse

• Michael Morris had four goals and three assists Saturday for the Sewanee men's lacrosse team, which rallied to beat visiting SAA rival Centre 18-12 after trailing 11-6 at halftime. Pierce Leonard, Davis Brown and James Millard each scored three goals and Hal Smith had 10 ground balls for the Tigers (5-2, 1-0), who outshot the Colonels 70-25 but were hindered by 23 saves from Centre goalkeeper Bryce McCoy.

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