Softball Comes from Behind to Defeat Liberty, 4-3

Raven Lee (photo by Bennett Scarborough)
Raven Lee (photo by Bennett Scarborough)

ROCK HILL, S.C. – Campbell plated three runs on two hits in the sixth inning to erase a 3-1 deficit on the way to a 4-3 triumph over No. 6 Liberty. Sophomore shortstop Ericka Nesbitt (Salisbury, N.C.) paced the team with two hits, while junior first baseman Raven Lee (Battleboro, N.C.) connected on her 18th homer of the season to put the Camels on the scoreboard.

The Camels (39-19) advanced to play on Saturday at 9 a.m. against either No. 3 Longwood or No. 9 Charleston Southern. Both teams already have one loss, so Campbell will have two opportunities to notch a victory and move on to the championship game played on Sunday at noon on ESPNU.

Starting the thrilling sixth inning with a single to center was Nesbitt and the table was set when senior right fielder Sarah Forgacs (Cary, N.C.) drew a walk. Big South Freshman of the Year Courtney Klingler (Alvin, Texas) doubled in the first run of the inning, 3-2.

Campbell continued to apply pressure as Lee drew an intentional walk with first base open to load the bases. Sophomore center fielder Stephanie Jones (Black Mountain, N.C.) was robbed of a single through the left side as the shortstop Blair Lawrence dove and caught a liner for the first out.

The Flames pitcher Chandler Ball (9-17) registered her fourth strikeout for the second out. Sophomore left fielder Camise Patterson (Fuquay-Varina, N.C.) hit a pop up behind first base that was in the glove of the first baseman and bounced out upon colliding with the second baseman as two runs crossed the plate to put the Camels into the lead, 4-3.

In the seventh, Liberty continued to battle as pinch hitter Holly Siez registered a one-out single to left center. Roberts was up to the task by notching a strike out and grounder to the pitcher.

Following back-to-back strike outs for Roberts in the first, Sammi Shivock started the Liberty offense with a solo shot to left.  The Flames took a 2-0 advantage by scoring an unearned run on a RBI-single by Hanna Nichols.

Becoming the fourth pitcher to hit the 20-win plateau was Roberts, who fanned five during the complete-game victory.