Extra pressure didn’t bother Southeastern’s LadyStorm on a sweaty-armpit Saturday as coach Ron Faubion’s young ladies posted 6-2 and 7-6 victories over Henderson State University. The sweep boosted Southeastern to 35-15 overall and 28-11 in GAC play
Mindy joined Lacie Cook, Brittany Wilson, Shayna Milam and Kelsey Overacker in a pregame ceremony honoring Southeastern’s five seniors.
The tournament bracket has been released and Southeastern will take on Ouachita Baptist (18-36 and 13-27) at 2 p.m. Thursday at the Tiger Athletic Complex in Bentonville, Arkansas.
McElroy threw blanks at the Lady Reddies through the first six innings and her teammates supported her effort with one run in the first, two in the second, two in the third and one in the fifth.
Simmons led off Southeastern’s first inning with the first of back-to-back doubles. She went to third on the first of Cook’s two sacrifice bunts and scored on Sydney Kramer’s single to left-center.
McElroy delivered a one-out single in the second and Renneker sacrificed her to third. Simmons’ double to left field plated the first run and Cook’s single up the middle drove in Simmons to make it 3-0, Storm.
Laramie Beal singled to right to start the third and Overacker came on to run. Haley Strawn drove a 3-2 pitch over the left-center field fence to make it 5-zip. Strawn doubled to open the Storm fifth and Courtney Riddle reached safely on an error by the pitcher. One out later, McElroy’s sac fly made it 6-0, Storm. HSU got a pair of solo homers in the seventh to make the score closer than the game.
McElroy pitched seven innings, allowed two runs on four hits and picked up her 20th win of the year.
Simmons and Beal were each three for four to spark Southeastern’s 13-hit attack. Simmons scored two runs, drove in one and had her 16th and 17th doubles. Beal delivered her 12th double.
Strawn was two for three with a double, home run and two runs batted in. Cook, Kramer, Riddle, McElroy and Renneker had one hit each.
This one had an ugly start and a beautiful finish.
HSU scored four runs on four hits in the top of the first with the big blow a 3-run homer by Morgan South.
McElroy then pitched five-consecutive shutout innings while the LadyStorm chipped away at the lead.
Strawn singled in the Storm second and scored on a single down the left-field line by McElroy.
A three-run third knotted the game. McElroy started it with a two-out single and Renneker followed with a single to center.
Simmons drew a walk to load the bases and Cook crushed a shot to the left-field corner to drive in three runs.
The Storm took the lead with a three-run sixth.
Renneker delivered a solo homer to center field to lead off the sixth. Simmons, frustrated by being hit by a pitch in the first and walked in the second and fourth, ripped a shot to left field for a single.
Cook beat out a grounder to the pitcher and Kramer lifted a fly ball to left to plate Simmons. Two outs later, Strawn singled to left to score Cook with what proved to be the winning run.
HSU scored twice on a double, two singles and a sacrifice fly before McElroy fired the strikeout pitch heard around the Great American Conference. Or at least by Northwestern.
McElroy again went the distance, allowing 13 hits, but only six runs, walking two and whiffing one to run her record to 21-7.
Strawn was three for four with one RBI to spark the Storm.
McElroy and Renneker were two for three each. McElroy scored a run and drove in a run. Renneker hammered her third home run to give Southeastern its first lead of the game.
Simmons was one for one, walked twice and scored twice.
Kramer and Riddle were one for three each and Kramer had one run batted in.