ST. LOUIS, Mo. - For the second straight year, the Charlotte 49ers softball team has eliminated the Temple Owls from the Atlantic 10 Tournament. Playing in an elimination game Wednesday night at Billikin Softball Center in St. Louis, the fifth-seeded Niners (29-25) edged the third-seeded Owls (27-22) to stay alive and advance to day two of tournament action. Charlotte will play Thursday at 7:00 p.m. EST against an opponent to be determined.
Tied 1-1 after four innings, junior first baseman Kalie Lang blooped a two-out fifth inning single towards the first base side that fell just out of reach of Owls first baseman Rachel Knable and scored Lorena Vela for the Niners' first lead of the day. Lang led the squad with a 3-for-4 effort and an RBI in the 49er win.
The Niners carried a 2-1 lead into the sixth inning before adding a run in the sixth and another in the seventh to secure the victory.
Chelsea Ingersoll led off the sixth with a base hit to center field, her second of the day, and pinch runner Natalie Capone moved over to second on Lindsey Holloman's sacrifice bunt. Capone advanced to third on a groundout by Alex Rogers, before senior Lorena Vela drove her in with an RBI single to center field for a 3-1 lead.
In the seventh, Ingersoll belted her second RBI of the game, a single up the middle to score Hayley Lewis from second base and give Charlotte a 4-1 lead.
Temple made a respectable comeback bid in the bottom of the seventh, as Ali Robinson picked up a two-out ground rule double and Samantha Schoell singled to drive her in, making the score 4-2. But 49er pitcher Katie Watkins got shortstop Sarah Prezioso to line out to Lang for the final out, ending Temple's tournament run.
Three 49ers - Lang, Ingersoll and Vela - had multi-hit games, while Ingersoll led the squad with the pair of RBIs. For the Owls, Robinson and catcher Stephanie Pasquale each tallied two hits, while Pasquale and Schoell eached dorve in a run.
Watkins (13-12) hurled a complete game gem, allowing just two runs on six hits with seven strikeouts and two walks. Catalano (8-8) was charged with the loss, surrendering three earned runs on ten hits with three walks and two K's.
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