BRIDGEWATER, Va. – After stymying visiting Randolph in the opener en route to a 4-1 victory, the 15th-ranked Bridgewater Eagles softball team came from behind in the nightcap to record the doubleheader sweep over the visiting WildCats in Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC) action.
In the opener, Randolph got on the board in the first inning when a fielder's choice drove in Lauren Stevenson to put the WildCats up 1-0 early. Starting pitcher Heather Jenkins retired the first batter of the inning before surrendering the run, her first in 33.1 innings of action.
Bridgewater wasn't behind for long as the Eagles answered with a run of their own in the bottom of the first to knot the game at one each. After a strikeout to lead off the inning, sophomore Kasey Anderson reached on an infield single and stole second to put a runner in scoring position.
Anderson was advanced to third base on a groundout before being pushed home a batter later when junior Melanie Lamb drilled a double to centerfield to knot the game, 1-1.
Both teams went down scoreless in the second and third before the Eagles took the lead for good with a single run in the fourth.
Junior Morgan Williams drew a walk to open the inning and stole second base to put a runner in scoring position.
Senior Hillary Rees pushed Williams to second base on a sacrifice bunt before Williams scored on a throwing error by the third baseman to put the Eagles up 2-1 after four complete.
Randolph centerfielder Brittany Willingham led off the fifth with a double but Jenkins retired the next three batters in order and kept the WildCats in check in the sixth to hold a 2-1 lead as the game moved quickly to the bottom of the sixth.
After a fly out to start the sixth, Rees singled a 3-2 pitch up the middle to give the Eagles a one-out baserunner.
Rees was put out at second base on an Anderson fielder's choice before the sophomore speedster swiped second to put a runner in scoring position.
Anderson was plated a batter later when a Leigh Lam single to center extended the Bridgewater lead to 3-1.
Following a walk by Lamb, Jenkins rounded out the scoring with a single to left field, scoring Lam, to push the Bridgewater lead to 4-1.
Randolph had an opportunity in the seventh but Jenkins put the WildCats down in order to earn the game one victory.
Jenkins went the distance to earn her 11th victory of the season. The junior allowed just one run on seven hits and struck out six to pick up the win.
At the plate, seven Eagles tagged a hit each in the game with Anderson, Lam, Lamb and Jenkins each picking up a hit and an RBI on the game.
Stevenson paced the Wildcats at the plate in the opener with a 2-for-4 effort, while Jessica Sanabria earned the loss, allowing two runs on three hits in 3.1 innings of work.
In the nightcap, it was Bridgewater jumping out to the early lead before having to storm back in the latter part of the game to earn the win.
Randolph went down without a run in the first before the Eagles hung a run on the WildCats in the home half of the inning.
Rees opened the inning with a double before a pair of fly outs looked to spell trouble for the Eagles in the first.
Lamb put Bridgewater on the board when she took a 1-1 pitch to right field, scoring Rees to hand the Eagles a 1-0 lead.
Both teams went down scoreless in the second before the WildCats exploded for a fourth-run third.
Randolph loaded the bases with a pair of singles and a two-out walk before a Gina Pagano grand slam stunned the Bridgewater faithful and gave the WildCats a 4-1 lead after two-and-a-half innings of play.
Following a scoreless third and fourth for the Eagles, the Bridgewater bats finally came alive in the fifth with a four-run onslaught.
After a Rees line out to open the inning, Anderson reached on a single and stole second after a Lam line out to put a runner at second with two away.
Lamb drew a four-pitch walk to put runners at first and second before a Jenkins single and an error on the first baseman allowed Anderson to score and put runners at second and third for Thomas.
Thomas took the first pitch for a ball before crushing a pitch to left field to give the Eagles a 5-4 lead after five complete.
Randolph went down in order in the sixth before the Eagles added some insurance runs in the home half of the inning.
Following a groundout to open the frame, Williams singled to center and was moved to third base on an error to put runners on the corners with one away.
Anderson bunted her way on to load the bases for the Eagles with Lam stepping to the plate.
The McGaheysville, Va. native drew a four-pitch walk to push home Williams, extending the lead to 6-4.
Lamb pushed the Eagles lead to three during the ensuing at-bat with sacrifice fly to center before Anderson scored on a wild pitch to put the Eagles ahead 8-4 after six innings.
Randolph scraped out a run in the seventh but it wasn't enough as the Eagles rolled to an 8-5 win in the nightcap.
Anderson paced the Bridgewater bats with a 2-for-4 game and a pair of runs, while Thomas drove in three runs in a 1-for-4 effort.
Thomas picked up the win in relief of Summer Ramsey. The junior tossed the final four innings to pick up the victory, allowing one run on four hits.
At the plate, the WildCats were paced by a 3-for-4 effort from Ashley Gardner while Gina Pagano drove in four runs in a 1-for-3 effort.
Starting pitcher Logan carter was tagged with the loss for the WildCats, allowing five runs on seven hits in 4.2 innings in the circle.
Bridgewater is back in action on April 4 at Lynchburg. First pitch against the Hornets is set for 3 p.m.