Tomlin & Trosper Pace Lopers in Game 1 Victory
Kearney, Neb. – Senior center fielder Mackenzie Tomlin hit a walk off single down the right field line to help Nebraska-Kearney rally past Southwest Baptist, 5-4 (8 innings), in game one of a double header Sunday afternoon at Dryden Park.
SBU scored eight in the top of the sixth inning to win the night cap, 10-2 (6 innings). Both teams are 3-9 on the young season.
In the 2014 home opener, the Lopers were blanked over the first five innings by Bearcat freshman starter Kacey Ayers. At the plate, SBU scored runs in three different innings to grab a seemingly comfortable 4-0 lead.
Tomlin (2 for 4) started the Kearney sixth with a double to right center and then freshman left fielder Taylre Keenan (Ralston) walked. After an SBU error and Ayers sixth and final strikeout, Tomlin scored on a fielder's choice hit by sophomore DP Kaitlin Hehnke (Grand Island H.S.).
Sophomore third baseman Sam Liebmann (Valenica, Calif.) kept UNK's hopes alive with a two-run double to dead center. A single by North Platte senior catcher Jen Kramer (2 for 3) drove Ayers from the game and then senior right fielder Whitney Frederick (Blair) greeted reliever Kyra Parker with a game tying single.
Grand Island junior Taryn Trosper earned the win by throwing 3.1 innings of scoreless relief. She fanned three and walked none while giving up just one hit.
The Loper eighth started with a lead offsingle by Liebmann (2 for 4). Pinch runner Kenzie Helmink (Fairbury) promptly stole second and then moved to third on a passed ball. The next two batters walked, the second intentionally.
After SBU's Allison Easley got a strikeout, Tomlin delivered the game winner.
For SBU, cleanup hitter Caitlyn Cooner went 2 for 4 with two RBI's and a solo homer.
UNK tried to come back in the second game as they scored twice in the fifth to knot things up a two. Helmink scored on a booted ground ball and Tomlin brought home Frederick with a single.
However, SBU took advantage of two Loper errors to score seven unearned runs in the sixth. The big blows were a two-run homer by first baseman Taylar Golay and a two-run double by pinch hitter Dana Graves.
Elmwood sophomore DP Erin Dwyer did go 2 for 3 as UNK's cleanup hitter.
The Lopers host Central Missouri in a double header Monday at 1:00 p.m.
Courtesy UNK Sports Information