COLUMBUS — First day action at the Southern States Athletic Conference softball tournament was a story of lots of offense in the first game followed by a great pitchers duel in the second for the No. 15-ranked Brenau University softball team on Thursday at the South Commons Softball Complex in Columbus.
The Tigers opened up tournament play with a convincing 11-3 win over Brewton Parker College in six innings as they pounded out 14 hits and left 12 runners on base. Sophomore catcher Morgan Smith had a big day at the plate going 3-4 with four RBIs for the Golden Tigers, including the game winner when she singled in the winning run in the bottom of the sixth.
Brenau opened up a 4-2 lead after the first inning and added four more runs in the third to take control of the game. Lana Lazar scored three runs on a 3-4 effort, driving in two, as did Tiffany Schandera with a 2-4 outing for Brenau.
Brooke Bryant picked up two hits and Sarah Applegarth, Ellen Black, Taylor Kelley and Anna Maness had one hit each for the Golden Tigers. Maness scattered six hits as she picked up her 22nd win of the season and the Tigers had their 32nd win.
Game 2 was a completely different story as Brenau’s Maness and Libby Munson from tenth-ranked Shorter College effectively shut down the bats for both teams and this one wasn’t decided until the bottom of the eighth when Munson singled in the winning run to give the Hawks a 1-0 win.
Maness picked up five strikeouts and gave up six hits, three of which came in the bottom of the eighth.
The Tigers will return to action against the Columbia/Brewton Parker winner at 4 p.m. Saturday.