Maryville falls just short in extras against Averett, 6-5

Maryville falls just short in extras against Averett, 6-5

Maryville's late rally fell short in heartbreaking fashion, as the Scots fell to the Averett University Cougars, 6-5, in nine innings.

The Scots rally in the sixth and seventh inning tied the game, sending it to extras, before the Cougars would manage the walk-off win in the bottom of the ninth.

Jessica Long drew a leadoff walk for Averett, before stealing second and being sacrificed to third. Andrea Grant used a sacrifice fly to center to score her, as the Cougars led 1-0 going to the second.

A Maryville College error on a sacrifice bunt loaded that bases for Averett in the bottom of the second.  Samantha Hall used an RBI single through the left side to score Nicole Cauthen and Essence Pulliam – both unearned. Going to the third, Averett led 3-0.

After Casey Cook doubled, a Maryville error again proved costly in the bottom of the third. An error put Cauthen on second, before Cook was able to score. The run ranked as the Cougars' third unearned of the contest, as they led 4-0. Morgan Corland struck out two looking in the inning.

A single from Mallory Griffiths and a walk from Long put runners on for Averett. A groundout by Hall pushed both runners to second and third with only one out, but Maryville's defense stood strong to hold Averett's lead to four.

Maryville plated their first runs in the top of the sixth. Rachel Taylor singled to leadoff the inning, before Morgan Brewer moved pinch runner Gabrielle Rathmell to third with a double to left. Alexus Murray scored Rathmell with a groundout to short. Brewer scored on a throwing error to pull MC to within two. An error by short put Scots on the corners, before a sacrifice fly from Christen Torres plated Snider from third. Going to the bottom of the sixth, Maryville trailed 4-3.

The Scots again came alive in the top of the seventh. Ashton Hayden singled up the middle, before stealing second. Jenna Roberts used an RBI single to right to score the speedster. Roberts would then steal season, before an errant throw earned her extra bases. Roberts turned on the burners, making it all the way home to give MC their first lead of the day, 5-4.

In the bottom of the seventh, Averett kept the game alive. Brewer used a beautiful play to thwart a sacrifice bunt, but the Cougars would put runners on the corners with no outs. Cauthen's single to left scored Cook to knot the game. Averett would load the bags on a hit-by-pitch with only one out, but Maryville would catch a break as the batter was called out for stepping out of the batters box. MC forced a fly out to left, as it sent the game to extra innings, 5-all.

A pair of singles and a hit-by-pitch loaded the bags for the Cougars in the bottom of the ninth. Corland struck out Griffiths, but a walk-off RBI single up the middle plated Breanna Murphy from third for the win in the USA South tournament.

Maryville (20-18) was led by Hayden's 3-for-5 day, as she added a run. Rachel Taylor, Brewer and Murray each went 2-for-5, while Brewer added a run. Murray had an RBO, as Snider was 1-for-3 with a run and two walks. Roberts went 1-for-5 with a run and an RBI, while Christina White recorded a hit and Torres and RBI.

For Averett, it was Cauthen who led the way with a 4-for-5 day. She had one run and one RBI, as Cook went 1-for-5 with two runs.

Maryville will look to take on Salem College tomorrow, April 14. The elimination game is set for 10 a.m.