The North Georgia Softball Team (52-10) defeated sixth-ranked Lenoir-Rhyne (45-10) twice on Saturday afternoon, 9-7 and 10-2, in the NCAA Division II Southeast Super Regional Tournament at Haines and Carolyn Hill Stadium to advance to the 2011 Women's College World Series.
The Saints, ranked second in NCAA Division II, advances to the women's college world series for the third consecutive year. The national championship tournament takes place in Salem, Va., on May 26-30.
Game Two - North Georgia 9, Lenoir-Rhyne 7
The Saints forced a third and final game thanks to five home runs as North Georgia rallied from a 6-3 deficit to claim the victory.
North Georgia's Ansley Williams (Cartersville, Ga.) led off the game with a solo home run.
L-R responded in the bottom of the first inning when freshman third baseman Haily Jarman (Wadesboro, N.C.) connected on a two-run double to right that gave the Bears a 2-1 advantage.
The Saints tied the score in the top of the second inning on a solo home run from Kayla Martin (Cumming, Ga.) with two outs.
L-R took back the lead, 3-2, in the bottom of the third inning when junior second baseman Carlee Carpenter (Newton, N.C.) hit her second home run in as many days for the Bears.
North Georgia quickly tied the score again at three-all on a two-out solo home run from Katherine Martin (Atlanta, Ga.) in the Saints' half of the fourth.
L-R took a 6-3 lead with a three-run fourth inning capped off by a two-run single from Carpenter but North Georgia answered with five runs in the top of the fifth
After the Saints' Natasha Willemse (Duluth, Ga.) cut the lead to 6-5 on a two-run home run, Pilar Harden (Watkinsville, Ga.) gave North Georgia the lead for good with a three-run round-tripper.
The squads then traded runs to make it a 9-7 final. The Bears also saw their 10-game winning streak snapped in the process.
Carpenter led the Bears with three hits and three runs batted in while sophomore Megan Laxton (Taylorsville, N.C.) (6-2) suffered the loss.
For North Georgia, Harden drove in three while Krysten Connelly (Lawrenceville, Ga.) improved to 5-1 with the victory and Jessica Coan (Duluth, Ga.) earned her second save of the year.
Game Three - North Georgia 10, Lenoir-Rhyne 2 (six innings)
The Saints used a six-run fifth inning to break the game open and advance to the women's college world series.
North Georgia broke a scoreless tie with two runs in the bottom of the fourth inning including an RBI single by Williams.
L-R cut the score in half in top of the fifth inning on a solo home run by Laxton, her second of the series, before North Georgia broke the game open with six runs in its half of the fifth capped off by a grand slam from Williams.
North Georgia's Sarah Johnson (Powder Springs, Ga.) and Harden ended the game in the bottom of the sixth with back-to-back home runs to run-rule Lenoir-Rhyne.
Coan limited L-R to just three hits and improved to 27-4 on the season while Lenoir-Rhyne junior Lauren Harris (Yadkinville, N.C.) (11-3) suffered the loss. Williams led North Georgia with three hits and five runs batted in.
MOCS IN REGIONAL FINALS
Chattanoonga, regular-season and tournament champions in the Southern
Conference, marched its way into the NCAA Tuscaloosa Regional championship game on Saturday.
And the Mocs (44-14), the No.2 seed, did it by working their way through the consolation bracket. Chattanooga dropped a 4-1 decision to Memphis in the
opening round Friday night. Winning pitcher Carly Hummel of the Tigers held Chattanooga to just one hit. The Tigers scored three times in the third, and that proved to be the difference.
But the Mocs bounced back and defeated Jackson State 8-1 in their first consolation game on Saturday. Winning pitcher Nikki Water scattered two
hits and struck out nine batters. And Chattanooga knocked off Memphis, a 7-1 loser against Alabama Saturday afternoon in a rematch. The loss eliminated Memphis.
The Mocs play Alabama, the No.1 team and the regional host, in the championship game Sunday.