Thu, May. 3, 2012 - [Softball]
JACKSON, Tenn. - After allowing back-to-back-to-back home runs in the fourth inning, it was only fitting that Freed-Hardeman pitcher Sarah Elizabeth Cousar hit a home run of her own that turned into the game-winner.
Cousar's two-out, two-run shot over the center field fence in the bottom of the sixth inning erased memories of the fourth inning and lifted the Lady Lions to a 4-3 win over Mid-Continent (Ky.) University on Thursday evening at the TranSouth Conference Softball Championships.
The three home runs allowed by Cousar - all of which came with two outs - were the only three hits of the game for sixth-seeded Mid-Continent, which appeared to be on the verge of its second straight upset. On Wednesday, MCU sent third-seeded Martin Methodist (Tenn.) College to the losers' bracket.
FHU (28-19) scored runs in the first and third innings to hold a 2-0 lead until the consecutive Cougar home runs. The Lady Lions looked primed to answer in the next two innings but left the bases loaded in the fourth and stranded two in the fifth.
MCU's Lindsey Rucker got the first two outs of the sixth inning before walking Shelby Cummings to bring up Cousar. The sophomore worked to a 3-1 count, then hit a towering fly ball that carried over the fence for her fourth home run of the season.
Meanwhile, Cousar (21-5) recovered nicely in the circle and retired the last 10 batters she faced. Her final four outs were all recorded on strikeouts.
Freed-Hardeman out-hit the Cougars, 11-3, but stranded nine runners. Cousar went 3-for-4 and was a triple short of the cycle. Cummings, Brittany Yates and Mercedes Norfork each had two hits.
FHU, winners of nine straight games, advances to the winners' bracket finals where it will face top-seeded Union (Tenn.) University at 2:00 PM on Friday.