Softball Continues Struggles, Drops Fourth Straight

As the halfway point in the 2014 spring season fast approaches, the Shepherd University softball team sits in a very disappointing second to last place in the Mountain East Conference softball standings. For the most part, the team has played above average when at home. However, the Rams are 4–9 when playing away from Shepherdstown, including neutral sites.

On Friday, March 21, Shepherd traveled to Athens, W.Va. to face Mountain East rival Concord in a doubleheader. The Rams struggled and dropped both games to the Mountain Lions by the scores of 5–1 and 6–3 respectively. Due to the threat of inclement weather that had been forecasted, the games were moved up from the original scheduled time on Sunday.

In game one, Shepherd jumped to an early 1–0 lead when senior shortstop Jess Mason singled and later scored courtesy of another single by junior first baseman Savannah Snyder. Unfortunately, this was the only run they scored the entire game as their momentum at the plate quickly stalled just one inning later.

Concord quickly answered back when Lauren Lewis and Lacey McDougall each drove in a run during the bottom of the first. McDougall would later belt a two-run homer in the fifth to give her team a comfortable 5–1 lead. The home run completed the scoring for the game. Freshman pitcher Tara Hanson saw her record fall to 4–4 on the season after pitching six innings, allowing eight hits and striking out one batter. In the nightcap, Concord quickly took the lead and never looked back as McDougall posted an RBI-single in the first inning.

The second and third innings consisted of much of the same as the Mountain Lions padded their lead with three additional runs. By the sixth inning, Concord’s lead was 6–0. In the seventh inning, Shepherd attempted to rebound by cutting the lead to 6–3 thanks to a three-run dinger by freshman third baseman Alexandra Witt. However, they came no closer and her blast would complete the scoring for the game. Sophomore starting pitcher Shannon Lyons lasted only one inning pitched and took the loss for the Rams.

In need of a bounce back win, the Shepherd University softball team traveled to Wise, Va. to face the University of Virginia-College at Wise in a scheduled doubleheader the very next day. However, they were once again swept, and this time the Rams were far from competitive as they scored only three runs over the two games.

The Cavaliers claimed a dominating 11–0 shutout win in the first game and they added another impressive performance in game two by winning 12–3. In game one, Shepherd’s offensive production was limited, although Mason reached base on a single while Witt recorded a double.

In the nightcap, Witt and Mason provided the only runs, but it was far from enough as Shepherd never contented for the win in this game.

With this loss, on March 22, the Shepherd softball team currently sits 9–13 overall with an undesirable 0–4 record in Mountain East Conference action. Upcoming scheduled games include a March 26 contest against Fairmont State and a March 30 matchup with West Virginia Wesleyan.

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