LAS CRUCES, N.M. – The Stephen F. Austin Ladyjacks scored three crucial runs in the top of the seventh inning which helped propel them to a 6-4 victory over Weber State Sunday afternoon on the final day of the Troy Cox Classic hosted by of New Mexico State.
SFA (3-7) got a solid pitching performance from sophomore Carlie Thomas (2-4), who earned her second victory of the season by pitching five innings, allowing three earned runs and striking out a season-high seven.
Freshman shortstop Linda Linares had a big game for the Ladyjacks, going 2-for-4 with 3 RBI’s while sophomore third baseman Cadie Weaver also went 2-for-4 with 2 RBI’s and now leads SFA with nine RBI’s on the season.
The Ladyjacks began the day by jumping out to a 2-0 lead in the first inning on a two-run single from Linares, scoring both Bethany Brown and Jessica Arana. Weber State followed with a run of their own in the bottom of the first inning on a RBI triple from Symbree Minniear, making the score 2-1.
After Weber State tied the game with a run in the third inning, SFA retook the lead in the fifth on an RBI single from Weaver, bringing home Brown from second base.
The most important inning of the game though was the final one, when the Ladyjacks scored three runs on four hits following two quick outs to start the frame. Leading just 3-2, Elizabeth Arana started the rally with a two-out double.
One batter later, Weaver singled home Arana to increase the lead to 4-2. Brittany Lee then pinch-ran for Arana and stole second base, eventually scoring on an RBI single from Linares to give SFA a 5-2 advantage.
Following an error by Weber State, freshman Landre Nattinger singled home Linares to put SFA comfortably in front 6-2.
Those runs would prove to be crucial because in the bottom of the seventh, the Wildcats plated two runs of their own on a two-run homer from Lyndsey Minnich. Kaitlyn Mixon was able to put out the fire however for SFA, retiring the last two hitters to put an end to the Ladyjacks’ three-game losing streak.
The Ladyjacks will next be in action Friday, Feb. 24 when they play both UTEP and Baylor on the first day of the 2012 Texas Shootout hosted by Baylor.
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