GREENEVILLE, Tenn. --- The Tusculum University softball team split the day with North Greenville, despite eight RBI and two homeruns by Grayson Brown. The Crusaders survived game one 6-5, but the Pioneers avenged themselves with a 13-1 run-rule victory to close out the doubleheader.
The Pioneers (15-7) is scheduled to face Erskine on Thursday (March 12) at Red Edmonds Field with a 2 p.m. doubleheader as their next contest.
Game 1: North Greenville 6, Tusculum 5
North Greenville took an early lead, but Tusculum stormed back in the last two innings, falling one run shy. Taylor Johnson went 2-for-3 with two runs scored, while Brown finished 2-for-4 with two-run homer.
The Crusaders got on the board with a two-run infield single and added one more unearned on a throwing error. North Greenville started the third inning off with a double and a sacrifice bunt to advance the runner. The next batter recorded an infield single to increase the lead to 4-0.
Tusculum started its comeback attempt in the sixth. Johnson and Brown notched consecutive singles, followed by a walk drawn by Chloe Freischmidt to load the bases. A wild pitch moved up each runner, scoring Johnson.
North Greenville extended its lead to five on a two-run double in the seventh.
The Pioneers did not go down without a fight. Ashley Harbison earned a walk as the pinch hitter for Tori West, but West returned to run. Anna Alloway singled to left center and advanced to second on a fielding error. Alexis Grampp hit a sacrifice fly to center, plating West. Johnson returned a pitch up the middle to score Alloway. After a Crusader pitching change, Brown took the newbie the distance with a bomb to right center. Tusculum had the game-winning run in scoring position with both Freischmidt and Sammie West reaching, but could not convert, dropping the contest by one.
Ivee Richesin (7-3) earned the loss with three earned runs allowed on seven hits with two strikeouts. Ashley Scozzari pitched solidly in relief with two earned runs on three hits and a strikeout of her own.
Game 2: Tusculum 13, North Greenville 1 (5 innings)
Brown drove in a career-high six runners in the rain-prolonged, run-rule thumping by the Pioneers. Delilah Malczewski (4-2) picked up the win by going the distance with four strikeouts, three hits, and one earned run. The junior needed just 61 pitches in the victory.
North Greenville started off the nightcap with a double to right center and another double in the same location to score the runner. This would prove to be the only offensive production of the game. The only other hit for the Crusaders was a single that came in the second inning.
Tusculum responded with force to the loss by plating nine runners in the second. Sammie West reached on a walk to get the rally going. Claire Crout singled to right center and West moved all the way to third. Crout then stole second with Kristen Gass at the plate. Gass hit a double to left field, scoring West easily. Alloway was plunked and Grampp singled up the middle to bring home Gass and Crout. Johnson notched an infield single to juice the bases. Brown hit a bases-clearing double after a pitching change. Freischmidt singled through the left single, advancing Brown. The catcher stole second before Bree Whitson launched a two-run double to left center. After nearly an hour-long rain delay and a new pitcher, West singled up the middle to score Whitson as the ninth run in the frame.
Alloway and Brown both hit homeruns in the third inning. Alloway's was a solo shot down the left field line, while Brown scored both Johnson and Grampp with a sky-high blast.