Blazers Fall to UNA 19-9 in GSC Championship

| May 2, 2016
source: VStateBlazers.com

source: VStateBlazers.com

FLORENCE, Ala. – The top-seeded North Alabama Lions went through their lineup twice and scored 18 runs on 13 hits in a disastrous fourth inning that fueled a 19-9 victory in the Gulf South Conference Championship game against the Valdosta State Blazers at the UNA Softball Complex on Sunday in Florence, Ala.

Valdosta State (40-12-2) entered the fourth with a 5-1 lead, and starter Caitlyn Calhoun (27-6) had allowed just three hits before the offensive explosion in the fourth, which gave the Lions (49-5) their 19-5 advantage. Both Huntyre Elling and Maci Fletcher came on in relief in the inning, before Head Coach Thomas Macera elected to go back to Calhoun in order to close out the frame.

UNA sent 23 batters to the plate in the dreaded half inning, and Tournament MVP Harlie Barkley did most of the damage with a homer and two singles in the fourth inning alone.

The Blazers put up a solid offensive effort of their own against Hillary Carpenter (23-3), thanks to a patient approach at the plate that resulted in five walks issued by the junior. The deficit was too much to overcome, however, as the Blazers finished with nine runs on eight hits.

Brandy Morgan went 2-for-3 in the game to close out a 4-for-12 effort during the tournament. Two of Morgan’s hits during VSU’s four games played were homers, and her performance earned her a spot on the GSC All-Tournament Team.

Heather Robinson also earned All-Tournament honors with five hits and three RBI’s on the weekend, and Kiley Rusen rounded out VSU’s selections with two homers and four RBI’s.

The Blazers will now await Monday’s NCAA Division II Softball selection, which will include an announcement indicating when and where the Blazers will compete in the upcoming South NCAA Regional Tournament. The selection show will air on NCAA.org at 10:00 a.m. on Monday.

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