The Appalachian State University softball team earned split on Saturday against Furman in what is the last Southern Conference series ever for the program.
The Mountaineers (18-30, 6-13 SoCon) dropped the opener, 4-2, but they bounced back to win the second game, 7-3.
The Apps out-hit the Paladins seven to five in game one, but they mustered just two runs. Dani Heichen (Pembroke Pines, Fla./Pembroke Pines Charter), who extended her hitting streak to 15 games reached on a lead off single in the first inning.
Heichen stole second base, her 18th stolen base of the season, and advanced to third on a throwing error. Lindsay Loudermilk (Bluff City, Tenn./Sullivan East) doubled to right center field, scoring Heichen for a 1-0 lead.
But the Paladins (28-22, 12-6 SoCon) scored twice in the second inning to take a 2-1 lead. Both runs on a wild pitch and an error.
Furman added another run in the fifth. Taylor Jenkins doubled to left field and scored Andrea Abbatiello from second base making it, 3-1.
Cara Parker (Lake Park, Ga./Lowndes) drove in her 25th run of the season on a single to center field to score Sarah Warnock (Jamestown, N.C./Southwest Guilford) from second base to make it 3-2 in the top of the sixth. But the Paladins tacked on an insurance run in the bottom of the inning on a sacrifice fly by Lauren Collier.
Alissa Schoelkopf (Sewell, N.J./Washington Township) of the Mountaineers went six innings gave up two earned runs on five hits and suffered the loss.
Loudermilk led the Apps going 2-for-3.
The Mountaineers jumped on top with a run in the frst in game two. Cynthia Gomez was hit by a pitch and Sarah Warnock singled, sending Gomez to third.
Warnock stole second base and Gomez scored for a 1-0 lead. It stayed that way until the fifth inning.
Parker led things off with her eighth home run of the year and Gomez had an RBI single that gave the Mountaineers a 3-0 lead. The Paladins finally got on the board in the bottom of the ffith.
Two Mountaineers errors and a wild pitch scored a run, making it 3-1. But a run-scoring double by Alicia Van Winkle (Coppell, Texas/Coppell) in the sixth helped App State regain its three-run lead. Heichen extended her hitting streak to 16 games with a single in the inning.
Winning pitcher Sydney Laws was toying with a no-hitter until Nikki Legg of Furman singled with two outs in the sixth. Taylor Jenkins followed with a two-run homer, cutting the Mountaineer lead to one at 4-3.
The Apps responded with three insurance runs in the seventh to put the game out of reach. Warnock had a two-run double to left center field, and Loudermilk had a run-scoring single.
Laws (5-8) went the distance and allowed three runs, two earned, on three hits. The freshman didn't walk anyone and struck out two.
The Mountaineers and the Paladins wrap up their series on Sunday at 1 p.m. The Southern Conference tournament begins Wednesday, May 7th.
Photo Courtesy: Sydney Laws, App State Athletics