AUSTIN — The Howard Payne Lady Jackets ended a 15-game skid, winning one of three games in an American Southwest Conference softball series against Concordia Thursday and Friday.
The first triumph for HPU since March 10 came during the second game of a Thursday doubleheader, an 8-6 come-from-behind victory.
Facing a 7-5 deficit heading to the sixth inning, HPU (6-29, 4-23) scored four runs to take the lead, then fought off a Concordia (16-21, 9-18) rally.
HPU’s four-run sixth consisted of back-to-back singles by Audrey Simpson and Tayler Rushing. With one out, Kodi Glosson’s RBI infield single plated Simpson, while Haley Slater followed with an RBI ground out to bring home Rushing, knotting the score at 7.
Sabrina Ochoa walked to extend the inning, then Kayla Boucher singled down the left field line to score Glosson. An error on the play also allowed Ochoa to cross the plate.
In the bottom of the sixth, Payton Walker’s two-out RBI double scored Summer Harper, who led off with a single. Walker was stranded at second and Concordia was retired in order in the seventh.
Rushing picked up the win in relief, pitching 2.2 innings with one run allowed on three hits. Tonya Thompson worked three innings and yielded three runs on eight hits with two strikeouts and a walk. Madison Witherwax tossed 1.1 innings and surrendered four runs — three earned — on two hits with three walks.
HPU’s 13-hit attack at the plate featured three from Slater, who drove in four RBIs, as well as three from Rushing, who scored three runs. Boucher added two hits and a pair of RBIs while Glosson and Rachel Hitt each contributed one hit and one RBI. Ochoa, Simpson and Madison Sims also tallied singles.
In a 3-0 loss to start the series Thursday, the Lady Jackets mustered just three hits — one each by Rushing, Glosson and Tiffany Winkleman.
Witherwax went the distance in the circle and was tagged with the loss, allowing a run in the first inning and two more in the fifth, on eight hits and two walks with one strikeout.
HPU ended the series with a 9-6 defeat Friday.
The Lady Jackets led 6-1 after a five-run third inning, but surrendered the final eight runs, including six in the bottom of the fifth.
Rushing finished with three hits, Hitt added two and one apiece came from Sims and Ochoa — who drove in two runs.
Witherwax pitched the entire game for the Lady Jackets, allowing seven earned runs on nine hits with two strikeouts and two walks.
HPU hosts LeTourneau in a three-game set Friday and Saturday to close out the season.