Clarksville, Ark.-East Texas Baptist starting pitcher Erin Garcia threw a four-hitter to secure a 6-2 win in game one and then the Lady Tigers overcame a 4-3 deficit late in game two to earn a 7-4 victory over Ozarks Friday in American Southwest Conference play.
East Texas Baptist (16-2, 3-1 ASC), the reigning NCAA III champions who are currently ranked No. 9 in the country, got three runs in the first inning to back Garcia’s performance in the circle. Trailing 4-0, Ozarks (5-15, 0-6 ASC) scored twice in the sixth to narrow the deficit. Kelsey Stephens recorded an RBI single and Molly Bowman had an RBI on a sacrifice bunt in the frame. But the Lady Tigers added a pair of insurance runs in the top of the seventh.
Stephens went 2-for-2 to pace Ozarks at the plate.
Tabitha Porter (1-8) took the loss after tossing a complete game.
In game two, East Texas Baptist grabbed a 3-0 lead in the top of the fifth, but Ozarks came alive in the bottom half of the frame to take a 4-3 advantage. The Lady Eagles collected five hits, and Ali Mathis, Casey Mays and Stephens were each credited with RBI. Stephens knocked a two-run double to right center field to give Ozarks their one-run advantage. The lead wouldn’t hold though as the Lady Tigers scored three runs in the top of the sixth. Garcia was inserted for the final two innings and did not give up a hit to receive the save.
Mathis went 2-for-4 to lead Ozarks.
Kelsey Mefford (3-3) took the loss.
The series concludes tomorrow with a double-header starting at 12:00 pm.