Mixa, Starnes Homer in Conference Openers

Mixa, Starnes Homer in Conference Openers

MOUNT OLIVE, N.C. -- Melissa Neyhouse had three hits on the day and Katherine Starnes and Anna Mixa each homered, but Mount Olive opened Conference Carolinas play with a doubleheader sweep of Belmont Abbey Saturday. The Trojans took a 6-5 decision in the opener before winning the nightcap, 5-2.

Starnes put the Crusaders up 2-0 in the second inning of the opener with a two-run shot to left. UMO tied the game with solo runs in the second and third before taking a 3-2 lead with an unearned run in the fifth. But Belmont Abbey answered. Mixa and Neyhouse singled before a fielder's choice loaded the bases, allowing Alyssa Sciaudone to tie the game when she was hit by a pitch. One out later, Brooke Pegram singled to left center for a 5-3 lead.

But Mount Olive answered in the bottom of the seventh, using a pinch-hit, three-run home run to post a 6-5 victory.

In the nightcap, the Trojans tallied three runs in the third to take the lead. Mixa's solo homer to left in the fourth cut into the lead, but two more runs for a 5-1 lead. Claire Doyle delivered a pinch-hit RBI single in the seventh to cap the scoring.

"We had a pretty good offensive and defensive approach today," Head Coach Brooke McCraw said. "Brooke Pegram played some outstanding defense and added some key RBIs. We came through with a couple of clutch hits today."

Belmont Abbey returns home on Tuesday with a conference doubleheader against Barton.