SPARTANBURG, S.C.- The Converse softball team put up a fight against Belmont Abbey in a Conference Carolinas doubleheader on Saturday afternoon at Tyger River Park. The Crusaders took the doubleheader 8-7 and 12-2 (6).
Converse (6-26, 1-15) was led offensively by Anna Bennett (Fulton, Md.), Maddison Lukens (Chandler, Ariz.) and Kelsie Land (Keller, Texas) recording three hits apiece. Bennett went 3-4 in game one with two RBI. Land went 2-2 in the night cap.
Marissa Steadman (Pauline, S.C.) recorded nine strikeouts in game one. Steadman allowed eight runs (two earned) off five hits in game one.
The Valkyries return to the field on Sunday, April 10 against Conference Carolinas foe Emmanuel. First pitch is scheduled for 2pm.
Game One: Converse 7, Belmont Abbey 8
Belmont Abbey (13-25, 6-9) picked up a run in the top of the first inning of the doubleheader on a Valkyrie miscue.
Converse responded in the bottom of the inning on a two out rally. Shelby Bullock (Horseshoe Beach, Fla.) started off with a walk and moved up 60 feet on a passed ball. Anna Bennett doubled down the left field line to score Bullock for the 1-1 tie.
The Crusaders scored two runs in the second and two runs in the third to take a 5-1 lead. BAC added a run in the fifth to take a 6-1 lead.
Converse started their comeback in the bottom of the fifth inning. Tristan Harvey (Anacoco, La.) started off the attack with a walk. Maddy Lukens singled through the left side of the infield followed by a RBI single to center by Kelsie Land. With two outs, Lukens scored on a wild pitch to bring the deficit down to 6-3.
The Valkyries used a four run sixth inning to take the lead 7-6 late. Mckayla Davis (Concord, N.C.) started off the inning with a walk. Savanna Fain (Inman, S.C.) drew a walk to push pinch runner A'sia Wilson into scoring position. Tristan Harvey reached on an infield single but a throwing error allowed Wilson to score.
A wild pitch allowed Fain to score and push Harvey to third. A Kelsie Land walk followed by a Shelby Bullock RBI single to short knotted things at 6-all. Anna Bennett singled to right field scoring pinch runner Makaylah Plemmons (Union County, S.C.) for the 7-6 lead.
A two run home run in the top of the seventh for Belmont Abbey allowed the Crusaders to regain the lead and take game one 8-7.
Game Two: Converse 2, Belmont Abbey 12 (6 innings)
The Crusaders started off with a double down the line and moved to third on a sacrifice bunt before a sacrifice fly to center brought home the first run of the night cap.
Converse capitalized on the Crusader's mishaps in the bottom of the first to take a 2-1 lead. Maddy Lukens singled through the right side to open the inning. Kelsie Land attempted a sac bunt and reached on a fielding error and allowed Lukens to move to third. Shelby Bullock reached on an error by the shortstop scoring Lukens. Anna Bennett hit a sac fly to right field for the RBI and 2-1 lead.
The Crusaders responded in the top of the second to tie things at two each on a RBI single up the middle.
Belmont Abbey used a five run fourth inning to swing the momentum in their favor and take a 7-2 advantage. BAC tacked on a run in the fifth and four more runs in the top of the sixth to take the nightcap 12-2.