GULF SHORES, ALA. – Totaling six runs and 13 strikeouts in 15 innings of play, Georgia Tech softball came up short against Lipscomb and Florida A&M on opening day on Friday in Gulf Shores, Ala. as part of the Sand Dollar Classic. Lipscomb topped Tech 1-0 in eight and Florida A&M won 8-6 in seven.
Lipscomb 1, Georgia Tech 0 (8 innings)
It was a pitchers’ duel in the Jackets 2018 season opener. Senior Emily Anderson got the start for the Jackets, throwing all eight innings for five strikeouts and five hits. Three freshmen made their collegiate debuts, with Lilly Hooper at third, Saige Pye at the designated player spot and Skye Webb in left. Webb and Ellebracht tallied the Jackets’ only hits of the game; Webb’s being her first career collegiate hit.
Despite allowing five hits, Jackets held the Bisons scoreless on defense at the end of seven, forcing extras. Unable to get anything going on offense, the Jackets took the field, looking to continue the Bison’s drought. With the tiebreaker placing a runner on second a double off the Bison bat sent the only run of the game home with a walk-off double for Lipscomb.
Florida A&M 8, Georgia Tech 6
It was right back at it for the Jackets as they turned around to take on the Rattlers. Freshman Naomi Dickerson made her debut on the mound. Freshmen Cameron Stanford made her first start in center and Breanna Roper made hers at shortstop. The Rattlers tallied their first run in the second but the third inning is when the bats started swinging. Florida A&M sent home five runs to take the 6-0 lead in the third.
The Jackets needed to get something going, swapping out Dickerson for sophomore Brooke Barfield. Barfield remained in the game, giving up only one earned run. The Jackets found their swing in the bottom of the third, scoring three runs in return off a hit and two errors.
The Rattlers tallied two more runs in the fifth and sixth to bring the score to 8-3 heading into the bottom of the seventh. The Jackets squeezed out three more runs but the late rally came up short and they fell to Florida A&M, 8-6.
The Jackets look to break even in the tournament, facing Lamar and Penn State tomorrow. With game times moved due to potential inclement weather, first pitch with Lamar is slated for 10 a.m. CT followed by the final game at 12 p.m. CT against Penn State.