The Emory softball team opened its 2018 season Friday afternoon with a split of a home doubleheader vs. Birmingham Southern College. The Panthers topped the Eagles, 5-2, in the opener before Emory bounced back to capture a 5-0 triumph in the nightcap.
Junior Toko Miller crafted a complete-game shutout in Emory's win, allowing just three hits while striking out five. Junior center fielder Sarah Flanders collected a pair of hits and scored twice while sophomore Jessy McLean hit safely on two occasions. The Eagles got on the board three times in the bottom of the first with junior shortstop Cassie Baca delivering a two-run single that scored Flanders and junior Sam Vincent. Baca later scored in the inning on a ground out by Greta Wilker. Emory would later tack on single runs in the third and fourth innings to close out the game's scoring. Meanwhile, Miller did not allow a hit over the final four innings and retired the last nine batters she faced.
In the first game, Emory trailed by a 1-0 count before junior Jenna Wilson opened the third with a single. After stealing second and third, Wilson crossed the plate via a two-bagger by Flanders. The Panthers put up four runs in their half of the fourth, highlighted by a solo home run by Savannah Lee. Emory scored once in the sixth when a groundout by Baca pushed Flanders home. Freshman Jacqueline Spizizen took the loss in the circle after going the first 4 2/3 innings, giving up six hits while fanning 10. BSC hurler Haley Crumpt pocketed the win, going all seven innings and surrendering three hits and striking out six.
Emory returns to action on Saturday (Feb. 17) when it hosts Berry College in doubleheader action starting at noon.