Softball splits with No. 9 Emory

Taylor Harkins (photo by Jimmy Mitchell)
Taylor Harkins (photo by Jimmy Mitchell)

ATLANTA, Ga.—Highlighted by a complete-game two-hit shutout from sophomore pitcher Taylor Harkins in game two, the Birmingham-Southern softball team split with No. 9 Emory, 5-2 and 7-0, Saturday afternoon at Emory Softball Field in Atlanta.

The Panthers moved to 22-6-1, while the Eagles moved to 26-4 with its first home loss in 16 games.

In game one the score was tied at 2-2 until the bottom of the fifth when the Eagles broke the tie with a single run. Emory added two more in the bottom of the sixth while holding the Panthers scoreless after their single runs in the top of the third and fourth innings, ending BSC's 13-game win streak.

Both teams recorded seven hits, with sophomore Maddie Ridgway going 3-3 and freshman Micaela Beck going 2-4 for the Panthers. Beck and senior Bethany Fronk recorded BSC's two RBIs. Fronk (11-2) took the loss in the circle, throwing 5.1 innings and allowing six hits with four strikeouts.

Strong offense along with a commanding performance from Harkins helped BSC win the nightcap, with Harkins giving up only two hits with no walks and seven strikeouts. The game was scoreless until the top of the fourth, when the Panthers broke through with four runs. BSC added another in the fifth before Beck homered in the sixth to bring in the final two runs of the game. Beck was 3-4 with three RBI, and extended her current hitting streak to eight games.

BSC returns home next weekend for the final homestand of the season, hosting Sewanee in a pair of noon doubleheaders on Saturday, April 11, and Sunday, April 12.