COLUMBUS, Ga. — The University of Rio Grande softball team closed out its latest southern swing with a pair of losses on the final day of the NFCA NAIA Leadoff Classic, Sunday morning, at the South Commons Complex.
The RedStorm dropped a tough 7-6 decision to Thomas (Ga.) University in their opener before being routed by No. 7 University of Mobile (Ala.), 11-0, in a game stopped after five innings by mercy rule.
Rio Grande finished the event with two wins in its six outings and headed north at 4-12 overall.
The RedStorm rallied from an early 3-1 deficit in Sunday’s opener and took a 6-3 lead into the home half of the sixth before the Night Hawks rallied for four runs to grab a one-run lead.
Larran Carter came on to routinely retire the side in order in the Rio seventh to nail down the victory.
Sophomore Taylor Webb (Willow Wood, OH) had three hits and drove in two runs for the RedStorm in a losing cause, while fellow sophomore Kenzie Cremeens (Ironton, OH) had two hits — including a double — and drove in two runs.
Sheala Brown, the second of three Thomas pitchers, earned the win by allowing four hits and pair of unearned runs over three innings.
Rio junior Raelynn Hastings (Commercial Point, OH) suffered the loss in relief.
Addyson Mauldin clubbed a two-run home run in the first inning and two-run single in the sixth for the Night Hawks, while Makana Pember went 3-for-3 and Corrine Diaz had two hits in the winning effort.
Game two was never close as Mobile touched up Rio sophomore starter Viv Capozella (Dover, OH) for five runs in the first inning and three more in the second.
The final three markers came off sophomore reliever Zoe Doll (Minford, OH) in the top of the fifth.
Jaden Morace had three hits, including a triple, and drove in three runs to pace the Rams, while Lindsie Sanders doubled twice and drove in three runs of her own.
Savannah Woodruff and Payton Adams added two hits each in the winning effort, while Courtney Ellzey added two RBI.
Brinkley Goff went the distance in the circle for Mobile, allowing just one hit — a fourth inning single by junior Morgan Santos (Dayton, OH).
Rio Grande is scheduled to return to action on Saturday morning against Ferrum (Va.) and Waynesburg (Pa.) as part of the Fastpitch Dreams Spring Classic in Myrtle Beach, S.C.
Randy Payton is the Sports Information Director at the University of Rio Grande.