Columbia, S.C.-- The North Greenville softball team kicked off the 2016 season Tuesday with a sweep of Benedict College. The Crusaders picked up wins of 11-3 and 7-2 to open the season with a 2-0 record.
Freshman Kate Lee kicked her collegiate career off with an impressive 3-4 performance in game one, knocking in her first career RBI while also scoring her first run in NGU's game one victory. Shayna Finley led the Crusaders with two RBI while Grace DeBoer was 1-2 with two runs scored and an RBI.
The Crusaders put together a big inning in the second frame, plating five runs on four hits. A Finley double into right field was the big winner for NGU in their half of the second, driving in two runs as DeBoer and Traci Howell crossed to make the score 4-0.
The Tigers would cut the lead to two runs in the sixth, using a big inning of their own. Benedict scored three runs on three hits and used an NGU error to cut the Crusader lead to 5-3. The Crusaders answered back with another big inning, as six runs would come across to score in the visitor's half of the seventh inning. Megan Johnson and DeBoer would both register an RBI in the inning as NGU added insurance runs.
Carson O'Donald would get her first win as a Crusader, allowing three runs on four hits.
The NGU offense continued its hot start in game two, pounding out 10 hits, which led to seven runs. Christie Reilly was a perfect 3-3 from the plate with a run scored to lead NGU. Kate Lee set a second career high in game two as she picked up three RBI in a 1-4 performance. She also scored a run. Taylor Wilson had two RBI and was 1-1 from the plate while Megan Johnson also accounted for an RBI and a run scored.
A Megan Johnson Home run in the first and Morgan Herlong RBI single in the fourth would give the Crusaders a 2-0 lead in the fourth. Lee would add to that lead in the fifth inning, as her first career home run would plate Reilly and Milam, giving NGU a 5-0 lead.
The Crusaders would get more help from the long ball in the sixth inning as Taylor Wilson's homer to left center would score Jordan Willingham and extend North Greenville's lead to 7-0. The Tigers put together a rally in the sixth inning as the scored two runs on two hits, but were unable to make up any more ground as both teams went scoreless in the seventh inning.
Avery Callahan picked up her first win of the season, as she pitched a complete game, giving up two runs on two hits, helping NGU to its 2-0 record. The Crusaders will return to the diamond on Thursday afternoon as they host Francis Marion University at 2 and 4.