ANDERSON, S.C.- The fifth-seeded Anderson University softball team was upset by the red-hot number eighth-seeded Carson-Newman Eagles dropping a, 6-4, heartbreaker on Saturday afternoon in the SAC Semifinals at the AU Softball Complex.
With the loss, the Trojans slide to 32-16 on the season while the Eagles improve to 31-19 overall. Carson-Newman wins an automatic bid into the NCAA DII Tournament while the Trojans wait to see if the committee places them in the top-eight as an at-large.
INSIDE THE BOX
Freshman Harlie Duncan (15-5) allowed eight hits and six runs.
HOW IT HAPPENED
Carson-Newman jumped out to a 3-0 lead after five and a half innings of play with the Trojans cutting into the lead in the bottom half of the fifth inning.
With one out, Anderson doubled to right field. The Eagles retired freshman Abi Webb bringing junior Kasey Grant to the plate. Grant tripled to right scoring on the overthrow to cut the lead to, 3-2.
Niles led the sixth inning off with an infield hit to deep short followed by junior Joshlyn Martin's hit-by-pitch. With two-outs and runners at second and third, the Eagles intentionally walk senior designated player Rachael Barefield. Anderson provided a spark beating out an infield single scoring pinch runner Khloe Saunders from third to even the score, 3-3.
The Eagles responded using a hit-by-pitch, two singles and a double to push across three runs.
Down to its out and a three-run deficit, Niles belted an opposite field home run to eventually set the final score at 6-4. Niles blast was the 16th of the season and the 63rd of her career.
Martin followed Niles with a walk while Hamilton's groundout to the first baseman ended the game.
Anderson must sit and wait to see if the committee places them in the top-eight as an at-large bid.