Young Harris, GA—North Greenville’s open and down start to the 2017 season continued on Saturday when the Crusaders suffered a pair of 5-3/8-6 losses to Young Harris College.
GAME ONE NGU - 3 YOUNG HARRIS -5
The Crusaders led after one inning of game one when Megan Johnson doubled in Shayna Finley and Morgan Herlong to give NGU an early 2-0 lead. Young Harris countered with a solo run in each of the second and third innings to even the score at 2-2.
The Mountain lions added a three spot in the fourth inning to take their first lead of the game at 5-2. North Greenville would tack on a run in the sixth inning with a Kate Lee sacrifice fly but leave two on base as the Lions limited any more NGU runs.
Megan Johnson led NGU at the dish with a 3-3 performance with two RBI. Morgan Herlong had NGU’s only other hit, as she was 1-2 with a walk. Amanda Croffin fell to 2-2 on the season after taking the loss in the circle. Croffin gave up five runs on six hits while striking out three.
GAME TWO NGU – 6 YOUNG HARRIS – 8
North Greenville jumped out to an even larger lead in game two using a pair of homers to gain a 4-0 advantage. Shayna Finley lifted an 0-1 pitch over the left field wall to give NGU a 1-0 lead in the first while Celsea Rivers blasted a three run homer in the second inning to account for NGU’s four run lead.
Young Harris would come right back in the home half of the second inning though to plate four runs on four hits to even the score. The Lions used small ball to claw their way back into the action, using four singles and an NGU error to erase the deficit left by NGU’s two long balls in the earlier innings.
The Mountain Lions tacked on a pair of two run frames in the fourth and fifth innings to double-up the Crusaders. NGU wasn’t done fighting though sparking a rally in the sixth inning to pull to within two runs. The strike came on one swing of the bat as Shayna Finley slammed her second homer of the day, scoring Grace DeBoer to cut Young Harris’ lead to 8-6.
The Crusaders had one more chance to take the lead or possibly force extra innings in the top of the seventh with two runners on base, but Young Harris was once again able to wiggle out of trouble, picking off an NGU base runner to end the game.
NGU’s offense found some rhythm in game two with 10-hits. Shayna Finley led the way with a 3-3 performance including two homers and three RBI. Megan Johnson was 2-4 while Kaitlyn Wagers was 2-4. Celsea Rivers finished 1-4 with a homer.
North Greenville dropped to 5-5 on the season after the two losses to Young Harris. The Crusaders will host Tusculum College on Valentines Day with a 1pm first pitch.