SAINT LEO, Fla. – The Saint Leo softball team (7-5) began the Saint Leo Invitational tournament with a win over the visiting Missouri S&T Miners (0-2), Friday evening from Saint Leo University Stadium. The 10-2 win over the Miners marks the third time the Lions have defeated a team with the eight-run rule.
Freshman Alana Tabel got the win for the Lions this time, improving her record to 4-2 on the year. Tabel allowed only five hits in the outing, striking out six and walking none.
After a scoreless second inning on both sides, the Miners were able to connect during the top of the third inning, when a two-run homerun by sophomore Kyra Slemp scored base-runner Dana Lawson to put Missouri S&T on the board.
The Lions answered back in the bottom of the third, after a triple from Ewing and a Miner error allowed Ewing to advance home.
In the bottom of the fourth, Saint Leo tacked on two more runs, after a string of hits by McKenzie Burns, Jessica LoBianco, Chelsey Steedley, Sarah Steiner, Rachelle Gremo, and Kylee Hardesty pushed two runners across home plate.
In the bottom of the fifth inning, the Lions were able to add two more runs to the scoreboard, thanks to a single from McKenzie Burns and a double by Chelsey Steedley.
Faced with the possibility of a run-rule, the Miners were not able to score any runs in the top of the sixth inning. The Lions, however, came out swinging, poised and ready to end the game. After sophomore Kelsey LaNeave started the inning with a single up the middle, sophomore Emily Holman took four straight balls for a walk, advancing LaNeave to second. McKenzie Burns then grounded out to the second basesman, allowing both LaNeave and Holman to advance, and a walk from Jessica LoBianco walked to load up the bases. The Lions then placed pinch runner Tiffany Thompson on third base in place of Kelsey LaNeave, and after junior Chelsey Steedley singled to the infield, Thompson crossed the plate to put the Lions ahead by eight, and win the game.
The Lions collected 15 hits on the evening, in addition to eight stolen bases and eight walks.
The Saint Leo softball team will return to action tomorrow for the second day of the Saint Leo Invitational when they take on Pittsburg State at 6:00 p.m. from University Stadium.
For more information regarding the Lions softball program, be sure to visit Saintleolions.com. Also, make sure to 'Follow' the Lions on Twitter and Instagram and 'Like' the Lions on Facebook.