Longwood softball tops Ohio State in NCAA Tourney
Longwood outfielder Glenn Walters delivered the go-ahead two-out RBI double in the bottom of the fourth inning in Saturday’s 3-1 victory against second-seeded Ohio State from Sherri Parker Lee Stadium, backing a strong outing from sophomore co-ace Sydney Gay to send the Buckeyes packing and stay alive for another seven innings.
The win for the Lancers marks their fourth win in the NCAA Tournament during the last three seasons. One of just seven non-Power Five programs to make the NCAA Regionals in each of the last three seasons, Longwood has won three of its four games against Power-Five competition, earning the program’s first win in school history against Virginia Tech in 2015, before downing North Carolina in the 2016 regional and Ohio State this season.
With the win, Longwood becomes the all-time winningest team in Big South history with their four NCAA Tournament wins, surpassing the three wins Coastal Carolina and Radford. In addition, the Lancers become the first-ever Big South team to win at least one game in the NCAA Tournament in three consecutive seasons.
Fellow junior Krista Kelly drew a two-out walk and stole her team-leading 12th bag of the season to get into scoring position and set up Walters’ RBI knock. Walters finished the day with two hits as the lone Lancer with multiple knocks.
Sophomore catcher Kaylynn Batten added the second Lancer run of the day on a fifth inning RBI double before Jordan Clark added an RBI double of her own to push the Longwood lead to 3-0 after five innings.
Gay finished the afternoon with two strikeouts over her complete game effort, outdueling her counterpart Shelby McCombs who finished the afternoon with four strikeouts surrendering four walks, four hits and three runs in the losing effort over 4.2 innings.
Ohio State got on the board with an RBI double from pinch hitter Alex Vargas to before Gay nailed down the final out and send the Buckeyes packing.
Longwood will take on the Spartans at 5:40 p.m. with the winner advancing to the 2017 NCAA Knoxville Regional championship against host Tennessee at noon on Sunday.