LYNCHBURG, Va.- With one out in the bottom of the seventh, Nadia Tibbs (Lynchburg, Va./Brookville) stepped to the plate with the hopes of bringing home the potential game-winning run for Randolph Softball. Tibbs did just that as her single to right field plated the winning run for the WildCats as they defeated Salem 3-2 in the second game of a doubleheader on Thursday afternoon.
The WildCats took the lead in bottom of the first on a Madison Brown (Forest, Va./Jefferson Forest) RBI single. Later in the third, Tibbs' triple to right scored Alyssa Swords (Disputanta, Va./Prince George) to spot Randolph a 2-0 lead.
Starting pitcher Abbi Pannill (Prince George, Va./Prince George) held the Spirit to just two hits while walking one and striking out two. Lindsey Chaney (Charlottesville, Va./Covenant School) came in the fifth and pitched a scoreless inning. In the sixth, she gave up a leadoff single but then picked up two straight outs. Brianne Coleman came up and smacked a two-run homer to left field to tie the game at 2-2.
Fast forward to the Randolph seventh inning. Delaney Nuckols (Rockville, Va./Patrick Henry) lined out to second base. Swords came up and hit a double to left field to put the winning run on base. Brown walked. Tibbs' hit was just outside of the reach of Spirit right fielder Hannah Escala and Swords rounded third to score.
Chaney picked up her ninth win of the season in relief. She gave up two runs on four hits and struck out two.
Tibbs was 3-for-4 at the plate with two singles, a triple, and two runs batted in. Swords batted 1-for-2 with a double, two runs scored, and a stolen base. Nuckols had a single, a run scored, and a stolen base.
In the first game, the WildCat led 1-0 after the first inning when Swords scored on a throwing error by the Salem catcher. The Spirits tied it with a run in the second inning and then broke the game open with an eight-run third inning. Three more runs came across home plate in the fifth inning.
Randolph looked to extend the game in its portion of the fifth. After Blair Epperson (Nathalie, Va./William Campbell) grounded out to third to lead off, Nuckols walked and then stole second. Swords walked. A Brown groundout moved Swords and Nuckols up. Courtney Lucado (Buchanan, Va./James River) then banged a double to center field to score two runs. The game ended, however, when Lucado was called out for leaving first base early.
Danielle Shannon (Greenville, Va./Riverheads) started in the circle and surrendered four earned runs on seven hits with three walks in three innings. Pannill pitched the last two innings and gave up three unearned runs on two hits, walked three, and struck out five.
Nuckols had a double, a run scored, and a stolen base. Lucado was 1-for-3 with a double a stolen base, and two runs batted in.
Randolph returns to Old Dominion Athletic Conference play this weekend when it travels to Eastern Mennonite for a doubleheader with the Royals. Game times will be at 1:00 and 3:00 p.m.