St. Catharine, Ky. -- The St. Catharine softball team was back in action today when they hosted Pikeville (Ky.) at Salt River Electric Field.
Senior, Brittany McKee (Somerset, Ky.) blasted a walk-off two-run home run in the first game to propel the Patriots (19-25, 5-15 MSC) to an 8-7 victory. The second game also ended at 8-7, but it was the Bears (14-21, 8-12 MSC) who came away with the victory.
The two teams will conclude their four-game series on Sunday afternoon for another doubleheader beginning at 12 p.m. ET at Salt River Electric Field.
Game 1: St. Catharine 8, Pikeville 7
St. Catharine trailed 5-2 after the fourth inning, but they scored three runs in the fifth, a single run in the sixth and two runs in the seventh to come away with the 8-7 win.
Brittany McKee not only hit the walk-off home run, but she also picked up the win in the circle. McKee pitched 3.1 innings allowing two runs on three hits. Tiffany Wickline (Georgetown, Ky.) started the game tossing 3.2 innings allowing five runs on six hits.
After Pikeville scored a run in the second, the Patriots answered with one in the third. Kelsey Gravens (Mt. Washington, Ky.) led off the third inning when she blasted a solo home run to center field.
UPIKE scored three in the fourth, but the Patriots answered with one in the bottom half. McKee led off the inning with a double, then, Caitlyn Blair (LaGrange, Ky.) ripped an RBI single to right field scoring McKee.
The Patriots tied it up with three runs in the fifth inning. Back-to-back doubles by Miranda Whelan (Ramsey, Ind.) and Carly Benz (Brooks, Ky.) led the inning off. Brittany McKee followed that with a two-run home run scoring Benz from second.
St. Catharine added another run in the sixth taking 6-5 lead. Tiffany Wickline ripped an RBI single to right scoring the go ahead run.
Pikeville came right back in the top of the seventh when Courtney Morgan blasted a two-run home run giving the Bears a 7-6 lead. Brittany McKee, however, had other plans as she belted a walk-off two-run home run in the bottom of the seventh giving the Patriots the 8-7 win.
McKee led the Patriots at the plate going3-for-4 with two home runs, a double, four RBI’s and three runs scored. Kelsey Gravens went 2-for-3 with an RBI and run scored. Carly Benz added an RBI and two runs, while Tiffany Wickline and Caitlyn Blair each tallied an RBI.
Game 2: St. Catharine 7, Pikeville 8
The nightcap was the opposite of the first game as it was Pikeville who came away with the 8-7 win. St. Catharine held a 7-6 lead heading into the seventh inning, but the Bears answered with two runs in the seventh to walk away with the 8-7 win.
Lexi Fugate (Bedford, Ind.) took the loss for the Patriots in the circle. Fugate entered the game in the seventh and allowed two runs – one earned – on one hit.
Jennifer Ortega (Delano, Calif.) started the game and lasted one inning. Ortega allowed three runs on six hits. Brittany McKee followed Ortega throwing 5.2 innings allowing three runs on six hits.
After trailing 3-0 in the third, the Patriots got on the board with a run in the third inning. Tiffany Wickline made a productive out on a ground out scoring Kelsey Gravens, who led the inning off with a single.
The Patriots were back at it the next inning with four runs taking a 5-3 lead. Lynsie Clark (Morgantown, Ky.) scored the first run with a ground out, then, two batters later, Kelsey Gravens singled scoring one. The other two runs scored when the Patriots put the double steal sign on.
UPIKE scored a run in the top half of the fifth, but the Patriots answered with one of their own in the bottom half. Brittany McKee led the inning off with a single, then, Lexi Fugate laid down a sac bunt. Lynsie Clark then ripped a single scoring McKee from second.
Pikeville hit a two-run home run in the sixth to tie the game up a 6-6, but the Patriots scored a run in the bottom half taking the lead. This time it was Miranda Whelan who roped a double scoring what looked like the game-winning run.
The Bears, however, had other plans as they hit a two-run home run in the seventh taking a 8-7 lead. The Patriots made it interesting in the bottom half after having a runner advance to second, but Pikeville got a double play to end the game.
Kelsey Gravens led the way at the plate going 2-for-2 with an RBI and two runs scored. Caitlyn Blair and Emily Fenwick (Lebanon, Ky.) each added two hits, while Lynsie Clark drove in a pair of runs.