LYNCHBURG, Va. – After a walk-off homerun in the opener handed the host team the victory, the 15th-ranked Bridgewater Eagles softball team exploded for 12 hits in the nightcap to earn the daily split against the Lynchburg Hornets at Aubrey Moon Field.
Bridgewater dropped the opener by a 3-2 score before storming back to claim game two by a 6-2 margin.
Following a scoreless first inning in the opener, the Eagles got on the board in the second when senior Sarah Heretick drilled a home run over the left field fence with two outs to put Bridgewater up 1-0.
Both teams went down scoreless in the third before Bridgewater used the long ball again to stick another run on the board. Starting pitcher Heather Jenkins helped her own cause when she blasted a homer to centerfield from her leadoff spot to extend the lead to 2-0.
Lynchburg threatened in the sixth as the Hornets had runners at second and third but couldn't plate a run as the Eagles held on to a 2-0 advantage as the game headed to the final inning.
Bridgewater pounded out back-to-back hits in the top of the seventh but couldn't add an additional insurance run as they clinged to a two-run lead.
In the bottom of the seventh, Melanie Tenney led the inning off with a walk before a double to right center put two runners in scoring position with no outs. The Hornets cut the Bridgewater lead in half off of a fielder's choice RBI before a strike out put the Eagles to within an out of the victory.
Amber Sulter had other plans for the Hornets as she put a Jenkins pitch over the left center field fence to end the ball game, handing the Eagles a heartbreaking 3-2 loss.
Senior Ann Komara paced the Eagles at the plate in the opener with a 2-for-3 outing while Jenkins and Heretick each drove in a run off of solo homers.
Jenkins picked up the rare loss in the circle, allowing three runs on eight hits, while striking out seven.
Sulter paced the Hornets bats with a 2-for-4 outing and two RBI including the game-winning homerun.
Hope Johnson picked up the win for the Hornets, allowing two runs on seven hits in a complete-game effort.
In the nightcap, the Eagles wasted little time in getting on the scoreboard as they drove in a single run in the first to take an early lead.
Following a groundout to start the game, sophomore Kasey Anderson hit a single and stole second before being moved to third on a single from the bat of Leigh Lam to put runners on the corners with one away.
Anderson was plated during the ensuing at-bat on a Melanie Lamb groundout to give the Eagles a 1-0 lead.
Lynchburg went down without a run in the first, but got on the board with a two-RBI double in the second to take a 2-1 lead over the Eagles.
After a scoreless third and fourth, Bridgewater regained the lead in the fifth off of a double and a Hornet fielding error.
Senior Hillary Rees opened the inning with a base hit before a pair of quick outs looked to spell the end of a promising start to the fifth.
Lamb turned the tide back in the favor of the Eagles with a double to center field, scoring Rees to tie the game up at two runs each.
Junior Sarah Goodman entered to pinch run for Lamb and was driven in when Jenkins reached safely on a two-out error by the shortstop to push the Eagles ahead 3-2 after five.
Lynchburg looked to respond in the sixth by loading the bases but Bridgewater hurler Aven Thomas came away from the inning unscathed as the Eagles owned a 3-2 lead heading to the seventh.
Rees led off the seventh with a walk before Anderson's single put runners at first and second for the Eagles.
Lam laid a perfectly executed sacrifice bunt to put a pair of runners in scoring position with one away.
Lamb followed up the sacrifice bunt with a two-RBI single down the left field line, plating Rees and Anderson to give the Eagles a 4-2 cushion.
Thomas rounded out the scoring with a triple to the corner in right field, driving in Lamb to extend the BC lead to 5-2.
Lynchburg scraped out a hit in the bottom of the seventh but it wasn't enough as the Eagles earned the doubleheader split with a 5-2 victory over the Hornets in the nightcap.
Thomas had a breakout game with a 3-for-4 effort at the plate, while Lamb propelled the offensive effort with a 2-for-3 outing with four RBI. Anderson's single in the game extended her on-base streak to 11 consecutive games.
In the circle, Thomas went the distance, allowing two runs on seven hits to pick up her seventh win of the year. Thomas fanned eight batters along the way.
Lynchburg was paced by a pair of players with two hits each, while Kaitlyn Morris earned the loss, allowing six runs on 12 hits in 6.2 innings of action.
Bridgewater is back in action on Friday afternoon as they tangle with Sweet Briar in a Good Friday matchup at the BC Softball Field. First pitch against the Vixens is set for 3:30 p.m.