Blue Raiders roll 11-3 over Austin Peay

Win third-straight game

February 22, 2009 · David Powell
AUBURN, Ala. - Middle Tennessee produced their second-straight impressive offensive performance as they defeated Austin Peay 11-3 on run rule in just six innings in the final game of the War Eagle Invitational on Sunday.

The Blue Raiders (3-7, 0-0) rounded out the invitational with an impressive three wins to just one loss. Middle Tennessee looked like a different team from the one that came into Friday's first game winless on the season, following up a 17-hit performance against previously-ranked Purdue on Saturday night with a 14-hit outing against the Lady Govs.

Lindsey Vander Lugt (2-4) worked the final four innings of the contest for her second-straight win. The junior gave up just one earned run on four hits and struck out five batters to round out an exceptional performance over the weekend.

Vander Lugt finished with a 1.42 earned run average and allowed the opposition just a .208 batting average, while striking out 25 hitters, in 19.2 innings.

Caty Juston got the start for Middle Tennessee, giving up two runs on three hits in two innings.

Ashley Elrod (0-2) got the loss for the Lady Govs. The righty allowed eight runs on eleven hits, while striking out three, in four innings of relief action.

Austin Peay (0-8, 0-0) began the scoring in top of the first inning. Samantha Butts singled a strongly hit ball off the glove of Blue Raider pitcher Jutson before advancing to second base on a passed ball. The right fielder scored on a fielding error by first baseman Kaycee Popham.

Shortstop Brittney Banania led off the bottom of the inning with a walk before stealing second base. The sophomore evened the game at a run apiece two batters later on a Martha Davis ground out to first base.

Davis went 3-for-4 with an RBI and run scored for her fourth multi-hit day of the season. The senior now leads the team in batting average (.382), RBIs (10), homeruns (3) and slugging percentage (.706).

The Blue Raiders went ahead in the bottom of the second inning. Tobie Joy and Kandra Singleton walked to put runners on and a hard-hit Caitlin McLure RBI single to left field drove Joy across the plate from second base.

McLure finished 3-for-3 with a RBI, two runs scored and a stolen base.

Brittany Williams tied the game for the Lady Govs in the top of the third inning with a nice show of individual effort. The second baseman smacked a deep drive to right field just past a diving Shelby Barrett and rounded all the bases for an inside-the-park homerun.

Middle Tennessee went back on top with three runs in the bottom of the third. Davis knocked a lead-off single up the middle before Vander Lugt put runners on the corners with her first career hit, a deep drive off the wall in right field.

Davis scored on a throwing error and Laurie Anna Cooley smashed a ball just inside third base and down the left field line for two RBIs making it 5-2.

After Austin Peay scored their third run in the fifth, the Blue Raiders put the game out of reach with a three runs in their half of the inning. Joy started things off with one of her three walks on the day and Singleton showed impressive speed to beat out a bunt single at first base before McLure smacked an RBI double to the gap in left field.

Banania grounded out to first base for an RBI and Barrett nailed her second of two runs batted in to make it 8-3.

Middle Tennessee was not finished yet as they added their third three-run inning in the bottom of the sixth. Dortch started things off by nailing a deep home-run over the fence in left field to make it 9-3.

Joy and McLure walks combined with a one-out single to left field by Singleton loaded the bases and Banania followed up with a single through the middle for another MT run. Shelby Barrett drove home the game-stopping score with a RBI single to center field, forcing the games conclusion on run rule.

The Blue Raiders return to action against the Liberty Flames at the Florida State Invitational on Friday, March 6. Opening pitch is set for 3:45 p.m.

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