MONTGOMERY, Ala. – Senior Bree Giordana threw a two-hitter to lead the Huntingdon softball team to a 1-0 win in the first game of a doubleheader with Piedmont on Thursday. But the Lions took the second game 7-5.
The Lady Hawks (24-11, 14-1 Great South Athletic Conference) need a win over Covenant on Saturday to clinch the regular season GSAC title and earn the No. 1 seed for the conference tournament. Piedmont (19-9) is 12-2 in the GSAC with two games to play.
"Piedmont is a good team and it would have been huge for us to sweep them today," Huntingdon head coach Gynger Williams said. "But if we're going to lose a game to them, I'd rather it be today than in the tournament. The next time we meet them, the girls will know what to expect. We know we'll have to play our best because we can be beaten if we don't."
In addition to the two-hitter, Giordana (13-6) struck out seven and walked two in seven innings to pick up the win in Game 1. Huntingdon, which managed just four hits in the game, put together three hits in the bottom of the sixth to break a scoreless tie. A Morgan Goshorn single scored Lauren Welch to give the Lady Hawks the lead.
In Game 2, Huntingdon went ahead 2-0 in the bottom of the second as Melissa McClure scored on a wild pitch and Kristi Taylor scored on a passed ball. But the Lions answered with three runs in the fourth, one in the fifth and three in the top of the seventh.
Trailing 7-2 in the bottom of the seventh, Huntingdon closed the gap but couldn't complete the comeback. A Holly Ostrander double scored Welch and Ostrander later scored on a Hayley Praytor ground out. Angela Barkman scored the Lady Hawks' final run on a wild pitch.
Welch and Ostrander each had two hits in the second game. McClure (10-5) took the loss.
Huntingdon plays at Covenant on Saturday at 1 p.m. and closes out the regular season at home on Sunday. Huntingdon hosts Berry in a doubleheader, beginning at 1 p.m. Sunday
"I told the girls we've got to continue to be aggressive at the plate, make the routine plays and give our pitchers support," Williams said. "Those are the things we've done when we've been successful. We need to continue doing those things as we move forward."