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Lancers split doubleheader with Aggies

Longwood Softball

In their first game day in a week, the Longwood softball Lancers shook off the rust with a doubleheader split against future Big South foe North Carolina A&T Sunday afternoon at the Aggies Softball Complex.

Coming off a seven-day hiatus that was their longest stretch without a game all season, the Lancers (24-25, 12-6 Big South) broke out for their third double-digit scoring game of the season in Sunday’s opener, sending four of their eight hits for extra bases en route to a 10-1 mercy-rule win.

However, the Aggies (11-29, 10-6 MEAC) got their vengeance in game two, riding a complete game from ace S’Nyiah Stinson (6-11) to hold off the Lancers and take game two, 4-3.

“We had great fight in game one, and it was a good team win,” Longwood head coach Dr. Megan Brown said. “Game two taught us some important lessons, especially at this time of year. We have lots of work ahead for this week as we prepare for our last conference series.”

The North Carolina A&T series was Longwood’s last non-conference showdown of the season and precedes a crucial Big South showdown next week that pits the third-place Lancers against second-place USC Upstate in a three-game set May 7-8 in Farmville. Those games have significant Big South seeding implications, with first-place Campbell (14-1), USC Upstate (12-3) and Longwood all within two wins of the Big South regular-season championship.

Longwood’s Sunday tune-up for that series saw junior catcher Alexis Wayland spearhead a hit parade in the 10-1 series-opening win, going 2-for-4 with a home run and an RBI double. Lauren Taylor and Mason Basdikis also drove in a pair to back a combined three-hitter from starter Sydney Backstrom and reliever Angelina Sherba (3-3).

However, Stinson kept the Lancers at bay in game two, allowing just three runs despite surrendering nine hits and four walks. Her seven strikeouts and a nearly perfect defensive effort from the Aggies led to 10 Lancers left on base, allowing a go-ahead three-run fourth inning to put North Carolina A&T ahead for good.

The series split gives Longwood eight wins in its past 10 games against unranked non-conference foes.