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The Basics 
Score: Purdue Fort-Wayne 8, Western Carolina 7; Western Carolina 3, UT Martin 3 (halted in the third inning due to weather)

Records: Western Carolina 0-1 
Location: Montgomery, Ala.

MONTGOMERY, Ala. – Western Carolina softball dropped its opening game of the season 8-7 in a walk-off double by Purdue Fort-Wayne at the Black and Gold Tournament hosted by Alabama State Friday. 

The Catamount’s second game of the day, against UT Martin, was halted in the third inning due to rain that entered the area. The contest was tied 3-3 before the game was suspended.

Purdue Fort-Wayne 8, Western Carolina 7

Turning Point 
Purdue Fort-Wayne broke a 7-7 tie with a walk-off double  in the bottom of the seventh inning to capture the win.  

How it Happened 
  • Purdue Fort-Wayne’s Morganne Denny hit a two-out solo home run to give the Mastodons a 1-0 lead after one inning.
  • After three scoreless innings, both teams combined for 11 runs in the fifth inning.
  • Western Carolina started off the fifth inning scoring onslaught scoring five runs. Junior Erica Hayes and Ashlyn Long started the two-out rally with back-to-back singles. Senior Hunter Gibbons walked to load the bases and fellow senior Madison Armstrong sent them all home on a base-clearing double. The Catamounts third senior Shaina Reed closed out the scoring with a two-run home run to left field.
  • The Catamounts enjoyed a short-lived 5-1 lead until Purdue Fort-Wayne retook the lead scoring six runs to lead 7-5.
  • In the top of the sixth, Western Carolina tied the game at seven with a pair of runs. Freshman Gracen Watts hit a lead-off double and Bailey Huneycutt reached on an error by the Mastodons during a sacrifice bunt attempt allowing Watts to score. A second error by Purdue Fort-Wayne put Hayes on base and Huneycutt moved to third who scored on a sacrifice fly by Long.  

Inside the Box Score 

  • Junior Kinsey Liscio got the start in the circle going 4.1 innings allowing six runs on six hits and striking out three.
  • Reed replaced Liscio in the fifth and had the loss hung on her closing out the game, 2.1 innings, giving up two runs on five hits and striking out. Reed falls to 0-1 on the year.
  • Rookie Watts led WCU with a pair of hits going 2-for-3 and scoring a run.
  • Armstrong had a double and notched three RBI in the game.

 

News & Notes 

  • WCU newcomers Kylie Shay and Watts got the first hits of their Catamount career against Purdue Fort-Wayne.
  • Armstrong hit her 28th career double moving her into fifth place in the WCU record books. She is two away from taking over fourth place from former Catamount Taylor Sigmon who ended her career with 29. The standard was set by Armstrong’s former teammate Courtney Price who ended her four-year career with 37 (2014-17).
  • Western Carolina is now 3-10 in season openers.


Up Next 
Western Carolina competes in day two of the Black and Gold Tournament facing host Alabama State at 3:30 p.m. and Jacksonville State at 6 p.m.  

For the latest information on Catamount softball, follow @catamounts and @wcusoftball on Twitter or go to www.catamountsports.com.

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