By Conner Walker, Staff Writer —
The Mocs faced some tough competition over the weekend as they traveled to Oxford, Mississippi, to compete in the Ole Miss Classic.
The tournament lasted all weekend, consisting of five games total for UTC. The Mocs finished the tournament with a record of 1-4.
On Friday, UTC had their first game of the tournament against the St. Louis University Billikens.
The Mocs struggled to get on base throughout the game, as they only managed three hits total in the contest.
However, the Mocs were able to get two runs across in the sixth inning, with an RBI walk from junior Morgan Kazerooni, Kennessaw, Georgia, and a sacrifice fly from junior Halie Williamson, Soddy-Daisy, Tennessee.
St. Louis got hot in the fourth inning, scoring four runs, on way to giving UTC their first loss of the tournament, 5-2.
Later that day, UTC bounced back and put up a great performance in their second game against the UT Martin Skyhawks.
The Mocs made quick work of getting runs on the board this time around.
In the second inning, outfielder Alyssa Coppinger, Whitwell, Tennessee, singled and drove in catcher Amanda Beltran, Orange County, California. Freshman shortstop Kacie Lynch, Jackson, Tennessee, came up to bat in the same inning and drove in Williamson to score their second run.
Later, senior Ashley Conner, Dalton, Georgia, came up with the bases loaded and hit her second grand slam of the season. The Mocs scores a total seven runs in just the second inning.
The Skyhawks tried the rest of the game to battle back, but the Mocs monstrous second inning proved too much as the Mocs held on to win 7-6.
With the Mocs tournament record at 1-1, there was still a lot of softball left to be played.
UTC began their second day of tournament play against the Southern Miss Golden Eagles.
The game was rather sloppy, as both teams combined for a total of five errors (UTC with three and Southern Miss with two).
Southern Miss scored one run in the third inning.
The Mocs answered with three runs in the fourth inning, courtesy of an error on a single by outfielder Aly Walker, Medina, Tennessee, that scored Connor. Infielder Brook Womack, Chattanooga, also doubled in the inning, driving in two un-earned runs, which put the Mocs up 3-1.
The Golden Eagles would answer back with five un-answered runs, one in the fifth and four in the sixth, to defeat the Mocs 6-3.
UTC continued to struggle later that day in their contest with host school Ole Miss. The Mocs allowed 10 runs through only four innings of play. The Rebels scored more than one run in each inning they went to bat in (three in the first, three in the second, two n the third, and two in the fourth).
With the rebels exploding for 10 runs, and the mercy rule becoming eligible after the fifth, the Mocs had to get some runs on the board. In the fifth inning, Kazerooni scored the Mocs first run of the game with an RBI ground out. First baseman Emma Sturdivant, Orange, California, doubled down the right field line to score UTC’s second run in the same inning. Unfortunately, that’s all the runs the Mocs could muster as they left a runner on second to end the game in a mercy rule defeat.
In the last game, and final day of the tournament, the Mocs were set up for a rematch with the St. Louis Billikens.
St. Louis, however, wasted little time to get a leg up on the Mocs. They put up three runs in the third inning.
UTC would answer back with an RBI single from Beltran, making the score 3-1.
In the fourth inning, the Mocs scored two runs to tie the game up at three. Walker scored on a wild pitch, and Conner drove in another run with an RBI single.
With the score being knotted at 3-3, St. Louis pulled ahead once again, with two more runs in the fifth inning. This put them ahead 5-3.
That would end up being the final, as the Mocs ended the tournament on three straight losses.