DAHLONEGA, GA. – The Mars Hill softball team lost both games in day two of the Steak 'N Shake Classic on Saturday, February 11. The Lions are now 2-4 on the season after falling to Palm Beach Atlantic 8-2 and McKendree 10-2.
Following a scoreless first inning for both teams Palm Beach Atlantic pushed ahead on the scoreboard with a pair of runs in the second. The biggest blow coming off the bat of Kayla Knight as she laced a double to right field to collect two RBIs. Alexis Brown doubled in the top of the third to score another run for the Sailfish, leaving them ahead 3-0.
Mars Hill came back in the bottom of the third with two runs of its own. Jordan Harris led off the inning with a single to left before advancing to second on a sac bunt. Following a strikeout, Ragan Broome singled sharply to the shortstop that allowed Harris to move over to third. Broome stole second to put two runners in scoring position with two outs. Kaleigh Jonas then ripped a double to center to plate Harris and Broome, cutting the deficit to 3-2.
PBA blew the game open in the top of the fifth after scoring five runs on five hits. That would be all the scoring that was needed as the Sailfish closed out the game with the final of 8-2.
Casey Stanek dropped to 0-2 with the loss, pitching 4.1 innings while allowing six earned runs on 10 hits. Nikki Brenager earned the win for PBA after tossing a complete game and allowing two runs on eight hits. Broome led the Lions offensively with a pair of hits, while Jonas' two runs knocked in were tops on the team.
Mars Hill was able to push ahead 1-0 in the top of the first inning. After Cassidy Dahle reached by way of error, Ragan Broome moved her over with an infield single. Addison Harris moved the runners to second and third with a sacrifice bunt and Kaleigh Jonas ran the squeeze play to perfection, giving the Lions the early advantage.
McKendree was able to take the lead with single runs in the first and second innings before the Lions knotted the contest at 2-all following a solo blast by Shelby Culler in the top of the fourth. However, the Bearcats took complete control of the game in the home-half of the fourth as they scored eight runs on six hits.
The Lions needed one run in the top of the fifth to keep the game alive and avoid the run-rule, but were unable to do so, going three up, three down, dropping the contest by a final of 10-2.
Culler led the Blue and Gold offensively, going 2-for-2 from the dish with a double and homerun, while Broome and Dahle recorded the only other hits for MHU. Culler (1-1) dropped her first game of the season as she pitched 3.0 innings and gave up six runs, five earned, on five hits. Rachel Hastings led McKendree with two hits and three RBIs.
The Lions will wrap-up the Steak 'N Shake Classic tomorrow as they take on host North Georgia. First pitch is scheduled for noon.