Joplin, Mo. - Behind a three-hit complete game from Sarah Williams, the Missouri Southern Lions softball team split its home opener this afternoon against the visiting Drury Lady Panthers taking game one 4-0 before falling in game two 2-0 at Lea Kungle Field.
The Lions (3-5) were led on the afternoon offensively by Michala Wood and Dawn Grass as the pair each finished 3-for-6 from the plate. Alana Hester, Brooklyn Farrell and Chloe Brown each finished with two hits apiece. Williams and Haley Kinnison each threw complete games as the duo combined to have a 1.00 ERA on the day and struck out seven batters between the two of them.
Missouri Southern 4, Drury 0
With Williams in the circle for the first game, the Lions jumped out to an early 1-0 lead after the first inning as Hester started the game with a lead-off single, swiped second and came around to score on a RBI single to center by Grass. Looking to break the game open in the second, Southern added three more runs to take a 4-0 lead as they chased DU's starting pitcher Caitlin Krebs from the game. Brooke Swadley led off the frame with a double to left field and after stealing third base, scored on a RBI single to center by Brown. After Dru Coleman singled to right moving Brown to second, Kinnison doubled to center field plating Brown and pinch-runner Jessica Castoe.
It was all Williams from there as she sent down Drury in order in the third and the fourth inning. After a error by Southern got a runner on for the Lady Panthers in the fifth, Williams got a strikeout and a groundout to get out the inning. Again retiring the side in order in the sixth, Williams escaped the seventh as she stranded runners on first and second getting the final two Drury batters to fly out and groundout for her first win of the season as she only allowed three hits and struck out three batters.
Drury 2, Missouri Southern 0
With each team collecting three hits in the first three innings, but having no runs to show for it, the Lady Panthers (2-10) got on the scoreboard for the first time on the afternoon in the top of the fourth inning as they plated a pair of runs on three hits. After a leadoff single to center and a sacrifice bunt, Drury got back-to-back RBI singles as they took a 2-0 lead.
After getting just one single apiece in the fourth and fifth innings, the Lions mounted their biggest threat in the sixth as Grass led off the inning with a single to center. With Rachel Harding pinch-running for Grass, Wood singled to center moving Harding to second. After Drury made a pitching change, Alexah Replogle hit into a fielder's choice to put runners on the corners with one out, but Drury got Swadley to foul out to the catcher and Kathryn Goins to groundout ending the frame. The Lions went down in order in the seventh to fall 2-0 in game two. Kinnison pitched a complete game allowing eight hits, two earned runs and struck out four batters.
The two teams return to action on Sunday as they play a double-header in Springfield starting at 1 p.m. from Thompson Field.