BURLINGTON, N.C. – On what was a chilly and rainy day on the second day of the Conference Carolinas Softball Tournament, Pfeiffer University won their second straight elimination game, defeating King University 8-4. Both teams took advantage of miscues from the opposition early before the Falcons pulled away late to stay alive.
Pfeiffer (26-22) was the first team to take advantage of miscues, plating a pair of unearned runs in the second inning. Emma Tuttle dropped down a sacrifice bunt to move the runners over, but the throw to first was high and went down the right field line, allowing the first run to score. The Falcons took a 2-0 lead on a Sadie Saine single to right field.
The score remained the same until the Tornado (18-27) took advantage of a Falcon miscue in the fourth inning. Amber Palmer got the inning going with a one-out single before Amanda Sports worked a 12-pitch walk after a foul ball was dropped, keeping her at the plate. The runners moved up to second and third before Hannah Smith drove in one with a sacrifice fly before Amber Walker evened the score with a two-out double to right center.
However, the Falcons responded with three unearned runs in the fifth frame. The inning started with an error, and the Tornado looked to get out of the inning after a pair of outs, but Julie Bullington connected on a two-out two run single, giving Pfeiffer the lead back. They tacked on another run on another King miscue as the took a 5-2 lead going to the bottom of the frame
Nevertheless, King had an answer as Stephanie Rodriguez started the bottom of the fifth with a single. She later came around to score on a Chrissy Melcher two-run home run to right field, cutting their deficit to 5-4 after five innings.
Pfeiffer added some insurance runs in the top of the seventh when Chandler Walker ripped a one-out, three-run home to right field, stretching their lead to 8-4 going into the home half of the final frame.
Melcher tried to spark a two-out rally with a single in the bottom of the seventh, and Palmer followed with a walk, but it wasn't to be as the Falcons got a pop out to end the game and stay alive.
For King, seniors Melcher, Palmer, Rodriguez and McComas played their final game in the Scarlet and Navy. Melcher went 2-for-4 and hit her 11th home run of the season while Palmer went 2-for-3 with a walk. Rodriguez went 1-for-3 three with a run scored.
Bullington led Pfeiffer, going 3-for-3 with two runs driven in.