Hartsville, SC – The North Greenville softball team (26-10) split two games Saturday at the Conference Carolinas tournament, and the Crusaders must now defeat King College of Tennessee twice on Sunday to earn the right to advance to the NCAA Division II Regional Tournament May 4-6. NGU and King will meet in the first game at noon at Byerly Park, and if the Crusaders win, they will play again immediately for the league championship. Ironically, North Greenville and King are the two newest members of the conference, and both advanced to the title series in their first season as members.
Coach Sarah Hall’s team was edged by King Saturday morning 4-1 as the Tornado got to ace NGU pitcher Rachel Glazebrook for four runs, one on a sacrifice fly, another on a wild pitch, and two off of a single and a double in the fifth inning. NGU rallied from a 4-0 deficit in the sixth inning when Sarah Griffith brought in a run on a fielder’s choice. With the Crusaders threatening, Amy Nagel grounded out to third with two on base to end NGU’s last serious threat.
Glazebrook led the Crusaders at the plate going 2-3 as NGU managed only six hits against King’s Hannah Light.
Facing elimination, North Greenville squared off against Limestone College Saturday afternoon, and the Saints got to Crusader starter Laura Hopper for two runs in the first. Glazebrook returned to the mound once again in relief, and shut out Limestone the rest of the way. With the win, she tied the school record with her 13th victory.
Amy Nagel ripped an RBI single that brought NGU back to within one run in the bottom of the first, and Glazebrook blasted a two-run homer (her third) to put the Crusaders ahead for good. She was 3-4 in the game and raised her team best batting average to .422. Sarah Armstrong also had a base clearing single that drove in three runs in the sixth inning that put the game out of reach.
North Greenville, now 26-10 overall, established a new school record for victories with the triumph over Limestone.
Fans interested in following the Crusaders in the CC tournament, can log on to the league website at www.conferencecarolinas.com to catch the live stats of Sunday’s action.