Chattanooga Softball Splits In Home Doubleheader With Mercer

  • Saturday, April 20, 2024
Chattanooga held off Mercer 4-3 in game one, but it took an extra inning for Mercer to come away with a 1-0 win in eight innings Saturday at Frost Stadium in Southern Conference softball action. UTC holds onto its lead in the league standings and improve to 30-12 overall and 10-4 against the conference. Mercer improves to 20-23 on the year and 9-5 in SoCon action.

Camryn Cernuto was 3-for-6 with a triple and a .833 slugging percentage Saturday. Jayce Purdy hit .500 (2-for-4) and drove in three runs to lead the Mocs to the opening game win.

Alyssa Lavdis picked up her eighth win and Peja Goold earned her first save of the season.

GAME ONE
Jayce Purdy drove in three runs and got a runner trying to steal to lead the Mocs to a 4-3 win over Mercer in the opening game of the series.
Alyssa Lavdis improved to 8-4 with the win and Peja Goold earned her first save this season.

Purdy was 2-for-3 on the day with three RBI. Olivia Lipari drove in the fourth run on a double to left field in the fifth. Chattanooga hit .304 in the game with seven hits and four RBI.

The Mocs got off to a shaky start with a walk and two errors in the opening frame to load the bases for Mercer. With one out, Alyssa Woods lined out to Kaili Phillips at third. Phillips dove to beat the runner at third back to the bag for a non-traditional double play, getting the Mocs out of the inning. 

The Bears went 1-2-3 in the second and Chattanooga put two runs up in the bottom of the inning. Kendall Forsythe led off the home half of the second with a single through the left side. Phillips, trying to sacrifice the runner over, reached on a fielding error by the charging third baseman. Addy Keylon grounded out to first to advance the runners into scoring position.

Purdy dropped a shot into shallow right field, scoring both runners to give Chattanooga a two-run advantage early. 

In the top of the third, the Bears reached on a walk. The next batter fouled out to Keylon in left. In the next at bat, the runner tried to take second and got caught by Purdy who is in the Top 10 in the NCAA for caught stealing and leads the SoCon.

Forsythe led off the inning with a hit by pitch to reach first. Zoe Wright came in to run for the designated player and advanced to third on a double from Phillips. Purdy, up to bat with one out, singled through the left side to score Wright, but was thrown out trying to stretch it to second.

Mercer scored its first run in the fifth. The lead off doubled and scored on a sac fly two batters later. 

The Mocs answered in the bottom of the inning. Kailey Snell singled to lead off the inning and Camryn Cernuto sacrificed her second. Lipari followed up with a double to left field, scoring Snell to give Chattanooga at 4-1 lead late in the game.

 

UTC needed that run as Mercer put up another two runs in the sixth. With two outs, the Bears doubled to the fence in left center. The next batter drove in the second run for Mercer with a double and a single on the ensuing at bat cut Chattanooga’s lead to one run.

 

Goold came in to get the last out of the sixth with a strikeout. In the seventh Mercer got one aboard with two outs, but ended the game with a ground out back to Goold to end the game.

GAME TWO
It was a pitcher’s duel that lasted into the eighth inning. However, the Mocs were unable to get a run around the bases and Mercer came away with a 1-0 win and keep the series even Saturday afternoon.

Peja Goold went all eight innings and struck out nine while issuing three walks. Camryn Cernuto had the Mocs two hits including a triple with two outs in the sixth.

In the first inning, with one out, the Bears got two on with a single and a walk. Goold picked up her first two strikeouts of the game to end the inning and strand the runners. She got two more in the second, facing just three batters.

Addy Keylon was the first Mocs batter to reach in the game, getting hit by a pitch in the third. She’d ended up stranded with three straight outs behind her. Cernuto hot her first hit of the game with a single to right field. She was caught stealing for the second out and a fly out to right center sent the Mocs back onto the field.

With two outs in the sixth, Cernuto flew out of the batter’s box with a long hit into left center and ended up on third. Olivia Lipari and Baileigh Pitts drew back-to-back walks to load the bases, but that’s as close as UTC would get to a score with all three left standing on base.

Both teams went one-two-three in the seventh and on to extras they went.

The lead off batter reached first after getting hit by the pitch. A hit back to the pitcher resulted in both runners safe and a sacrifice moved both into scoring position. The game winner came on a one-out sacrifice fly to center field.

Chattanooga holds onto its lead in the SoCon standings and will wrap up the series Sunday against Mercer. First pitch is slated for 2:00 p.m. and it’s Disney Princess Day and stay to get autographs after the game.
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