The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Sports

April 6, 2014

Grass blasts record-setting homer as Lions split

Missouri Southern first baseman Dawn Grass is in a class all her own.

Literally. Sunday, the senior became the school’s all-time home run leader as the Lions split a doubleheader with Washburn, losing 16-13 before taking the nightcap 7-6. She wasted no time, belting the three-run shot (her 27th home run to pass Angie Turner’s mark) in the bottom of the first in the opener.

The Ichabods responded in the second inning by plating six runs to take a 7-3 lead after two. Another big inning, this time four runs for Washburn, dug an 11-6 hole for the Lions after three. Southern pulled within a run after its own four-run fourth, however, and tied the game 11-11 with a single tally in the fifth.

Washburn pushed across two more runs, one each in the sixth and seventh, but Southern clawed back one more time with a pair of last-chance runs in the bottom of the frame to force extras. The scoring halted for one inning, the eighth, but the Ichabods put the game away with a three-run ninth inning.

In the next game, it was Southern who would be the beneficiary of a big final inning. Washburn took a 5-0 advantage after four-and-a-half innings. The Lions mounted the comeback with a pair of runs in the bottom of the fifth, but trailed 6-2 going into the bottom of the seventh and final inning.

The Lions quickly loaded the bases with hits by Brooklyn Farell and Jessica Castoe and a fielder’s choice and error combination on a Chloe Brown grounder. The Ichabods brought Lauren Thimmesch to the mound to relieve Samantha Carson, and Southern had a less than polite greeting awaiting her.

Shelby Romines singled up the middle for two RBI, drawing the Lions close at 6-4. Grass was walked to load the bases for Alexah Replogle, who got Southern within one with an RBI single. The tying run scored on Kathryn Goins’ RBI groundout. An error by first baseman Marina Quimny allowed Michala Wood (pinch-running for Grass) to score the fifth run of the inning, completing Southern’s walk-off.

Southern will return to action with a doubleheader at Pittsburg State starting at 4 p.m. Wednesday.

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