FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. -- Led by Brittany Bucklin, the Meredith College softball team collected a pair of road wins at Methodist University Tuesday afternoon. Bucklin tallied four hits with four runs batted in to place the Angels atop the USA South East Division alongside Averett with William Peace, Salem, and Maryville next on the schedule.
Bucklin scored the lone run of game one in the first inning with a sacrific fly to drive in Erica Occena. Occena and Haley Ervin led off the contest with a pair of singles to set up Bucklin's RBI. Eran Artigues and Sarah Watson followed in the second frame with a pair of hits but were left on base, and the next spark came in the fifth stanza with a single from both Occena and Ellen Blevins, who subbed in for Ervin.
Bucklin doubled to left in the sixth, and Watson and Occena closed out the Meredith offense in the seventh with a pair of hits.
Taylor Jackson shut out the Monarchs for her sixth season win on five hits, one walk, and striking out three. MU's Aly Thomas was credited with the loss, earning Meredith's one run on nine hits with just one strikeout.
Bucklin's bat continued to threaten Methodist's defense as she recorded three singles in four at-bats, scoring three runs for the Avenging Angels. After a slow start for the Angels with just one hit from Watson, Julia Allsbrook advanced on an infield error in the third and Occena singled. Bucklin drove in both runners, and Maria Annunziata scored Bucklin with a single to right.
The Monarchs picked up a runner with an infield misstep in the fourth frame and managed to send her home to cut Meredith's lead to two.
In the top of the fifth, the Angels extended their lead to five thanks to a Bucklin-RBI and an unearned run with Annunziata at-bat. The two would pair up once more in the seventh to give Meredith a five-run advantage with the Monarchs coming to bat.
MU loaded the bases in the bottom of the frame and the coaching staff strategically placed their top runners in the lineup ready for an opportunity. But with Myah Morse in the circle, the Meredith infield managed the next two batters to secure the rookie's second career win.
Morse faced all 29 Monarchs, earning no runs on two hits with four walks and three strikeouts. Chloe Hespeler tossed a complete game for the hosts, earning two-of-six runs scored on eight hits, striking out one.
The Angels continue the USA South schedule tomorrow playing host to cross-town rival William Peace in a 2:30 p.m. start. Follow the live action HERE, or bundle up to watch the Angels in person.