South Carolina State Upsets Howard
ORMOND BEACH, FLA. - South Carolina State parlayed some untimely miscues and a sterling pitching performance by Raven Johnson into a 5-0 upset win over Howard University in the opening round of the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference softball tournament at the Ormond Beach Sports Complex.
The Lady Bulldogs (9-41), who came in as the Number 4 seed in the South Division, broke a scoreless tie in the top of the fourth. Tonya Giles reached base on an error. LaTavia Riley, who went 2 for 3 on the day advanced her to second base. Then Channell Thompson doubled to score Giles and Riley for a 2-0 lead.
South Carolina State all but put the game away in the top of the fifth. First Denita Carter reached base on a single. She advanced to second on a hit by Giles. Riley was hit by a pitch to load the bases. Carter scored from third base following an illegal pitch by Christina McCoy to make it 3-0. Then Giles and Riley scored on an error by right-fielder Christine Sborz to close out the scoring.
The Lady Bison (24-21), who came into the game as the Number 1 seed in the North Division, never got untracked. The Lady Bulldogs' pitcher, Raven Johnson, proved to be very efficient as she faced 25 batters, scattered three hits and walked one batter against the Howard team which came into the game with a .330 team batting average and ranked as one of the top run producers in the MEAC. The potent Lady Bison lineup that features six batters who hit over 300, failed to threaten.
Johnson (9-31) picked up the win while Carly Martin (9-8) took the loss.
South Carolina State will take on the winner of the North Carolina A&T-Coppin State game at 7 pm. The Lady Bison will face Hampton University in the loser's bracket at 4:30 pm.