Offensive outburst leads Barton to split at Saint Aug’s

Barton sophomore Liz White was one out away from a complete game shutout at Saint Augustine's on Wednesday.
Barton sophomore Liz White was one out away from a complete game shutout at Saint Augustine's on Wednesday.

by Kevin Buczek

RALEIGH, N.C.-The Lady Bulldogs scored a season-high 10 runs on 12 hits in the second game of Wednesday's non-conference doubleheader at Saint Augustine's University to earn a split and rebound from a shocking loss in the first game.

Senior Kendra Kassonie led Barton College to the 10-5 victory in game two with four hits including a triple. Kassonie also scored twice and stole one base.

In the opener, sophomore Liz White was closing in on a complete-game shutout for the Lady Bulldogs but an error with two outs in the bottom of the seventh extended the frame and Saint Aug's took advantage with five unearned runs to rally for a jaw dropping 5-4 walk-off win.

Barton constructed its 4-nil advantage with a freshman Megan Kelly RBI single in the fourth; a White sac fly in the fifth; and a freshman Taylor Bowden two-run double in the seventh.

Kelly accounted for two of the Lady Bulldogs five hits while Rachel Jordan scored twice.

The Royal Blue and White threatened to score in every inning, which was aided by eight walks. Junior Betsy Braswell drew base on balls in all four of her plate appearances and sophomore Samantha Bass drew three walks.

BC left 11 runners on base including stranding at least one Bulldog each inning.

With two outs and just one Falcon on first base in the seventh, White induced a high infield popup that, if caught, would give Barton its second straight shutout win. However, the ball deflected off a glove and hit the ground as several infielders hesitantly converged on the towering fly. The Falcons took advantage of the costly miscue with three consecutive hits to rally. Lakeisha Ford and Daja White knotted the score at 4-4 with a pair of two-run doubles before Meghan Mahon drove in White from second with a walk-off single.

White scattered seven hits and did not allow an earned run in the hard-luck loss. White only issued one walk while fanning four Falcons.

The Bulldogs bats found a way to drive in more runs in the finale with a dozen hits including base knocks by seven players throughout the lineup.

Barton took an initial two-run lead in the top of the first that was highlighted by a senior Amber Weaver RBI single to left.

Saint Aug's answered with three runs in the bottom of the second to jump ahead, 3-2. Daja White highlighted the comeback with another two-run double.

The Lady Bulldogs raced ahead for good moments later with six runs in the top of the fourth. BC totaled five hits in the frame. Sophomore Crystal Britton knotted the score with a bases-loaded walk before an RBI single by freshman Lindsey Sharpe put Barton back in front. Bass followed with a two-run single and consecutive RBI hits by Kelly and Kassonie completed the outburst.

Kassonie ripped a triple to center in the sixth to score Kelly, who led off with a single and a stolen base, and then tagged up and scored on a sac fly by Braswell to complete BC's scoring output.

The Falcons plated two more runs on two more doubles off the bats of Tyanna Peterson and Ford in the home half of the sixth but Barton sophomore pitcher Ashlyn Reagan settled down to wrap up a complete-game victory.

Reagan had an identical line as White in the first game of seven hits allowed with just one walk and four K's but her five runs were all earned.

Kassonie poked a game-high four hits. Kelly reached base three times with two hits and a walk. Weaver hit safely twice and touched home plate both times. Braswell walked two more times to finish with six total free passes on the afternoon.

Barton (3-7 overall) will begin Conference Carolinas play on the road over the weekend of March 1-2. The Lady Bulldogs will open up at Belmont Abbey College on Saturday at 1:30 p.m., before trekking to Limestone College on Sunday at 1 p.m.