Golden Suns split series at Monticello

Despite managing only two hits in the opening double header 2-1 loss against Arkansas at Monticello (15-4, 7-1 GAC), Arkansas Tech (14- 5, 5-3 GAC) was able to crank out 11 hits in its 8-4 win in the second game on Sunday in Russellville to split a series cut in half by weather.

“I thought their first pitcher threw really well, and we didn’t make any adjustments,” said head coach Kristina McSweeney. “Our offense was almost nonexistent in the first game, so it was a tough loss. We were having a hard time hitting balls on the outside part of the plate, and we swung and missed a lot. We could have played better, but we battled back, put balls in play and looked like we knew what we were doing again in the second game.”

Junior center fielder Kambri Hill (1/3, one RBI) was the only Golden Sun player to produce any runs in the first game when she hit a solo homer in the seventh and final inning. But UAM had notched two runs earlier in the sixth and seventh innings, so Hill’s home run would not be enough. Senior Victoria Hule (5-2) pitched a full game and received the loss, giving up six hits and two earned runs while striking out a pair.

In the second game, senior right fielder Shanna Davidson led the team offensively, going 2/3 with four RBIs. Senior shortstop Whitney Robinson was 3/3 with two RBIs, and senior third baseman Chealsea Reeves and Hill both chipped in an RBI.

UAM struck first in the second inning on a RBI single to right field, but Tech would score all of its eight runs in the third through fifth innings.

Hill’s ground out RBI to the shortstop tied it up at a run a piece in the third, and a double from Robinson, a triple from Reeves and a single from Davidson in the fourth made it 4-1. Robinson singled in a run in the fifth before Davidson hit a three-run home run over the left field fence. UAM scored on a ground out and a two-run homer in the seventh, but freshman Morgan Vaughan (4-1) was able to earn the win after pitching a full game and giving up five hits, four runs and fanning three.

“Consistency is our biggest issue right now,” McSweeney said. “We have games where our pitching and hitting is solid, but other times our pitching will not be where it needs to be. I think this is a really exciting group. We’ve beat some really good teams; we’re not playing bad per say we just have to step it up a little bit.”

The Golden Suns also split a series with Pittsburg State on March 10, winning the first game 11-3 and losing the second by the same score. On March 11, Tech swept Missouri Southern with 2-1 and 3-2 wins.

Tech will travel to Magnolia to play Great American Conference opponent Southern Arkansas (12- 7, 6-3 GAC) on Friday and Saturday