by Mark Jagord, sports information assistant
FLORENCE, S.C. – The Georgia College softball team (24-8, 3-3 PBC) split a pair of Peach Belt Conference (PBC) games at Francis Marion University (16-16, 4-4 PBC) Sunday at FMU Softball Stadium. The Bobcats took the first game of the twinbill 8-5 before dropping the second 8-4 as senior Whitney Okvist (Kennesaw, Ga.) climbed to No. 8 on the NCAA Division II all-time stolen bases list.
In the first game, sophomore Kristen Brooks' (Brunswick, Ga.) three-run home run clinched it for the Bobcats in the sixth inning, while sophomore Taylor Campbell (Warner Robins, Ga.) belted two home runs in the third and seventh innings. Both Brooks and Campbell finished the game with three RBI apiece, while Brooks has posted home runs in back-to-back days.
Okvist wasted no time moving into the NCAA Division II all-time stolen bases top-10 list after getting walked as the Bobcats' leadoff batter. Her first swipe of the day left her in a three-way tie for ninth after entering the contest at No. 11.
Freshman Carly Lewis (Seymour, Tenn.)(10-5) gave up six hits in seven innings, while allowing just two earned runs with three strikeouts in picking up her 10th win of the season.
In the second game, the Patriots had two four-run innings that proved too much to overcome. The Bobcats still had some fight entering their final at-bat down 8-2, with two seventh-inning runs to make it 8-4.
The game started well for Georgia College and eerily similar for Okvist. After being walked as the lead-off batter again, she proceeded to steal second base and move into a tie for eighth on the NCAA Division II career stolen bases list with 153 swipes. A Campbell single later in the first would score Okvist and give the Bobcats a 1-0 lead.
Another Campbell single in the third inning would score sophomore Abi LeRoy (Dublin, Ga.) and up the Bobcat lead to 2-0, but FMU would score eight runs in the next three innings to discourage any comeback hopes.
All six of the Bobcat hits in the second game came from Campbell, LeRoy and freshman Danielle Bernstein (Cumming, Ga.); with each getting two apiece. Sophomore Marisa Boyette (Marietta, Ga.)(8-3) suffered the loss from the mound in five innings of work, allowing six runs with three earned.
Georgia College will resume PBC play with a doubleheader at No. 9 University of North Georgia Thursday, March 27 beginning at 4 p.m.
The Georgia College Department of Athletics, two-time winners of the PBC Commissioner's Cup, sponsors 11 varsity athletic programs at the NCAA Division II level. As a Division II program, Bobcat Athletics prides itself on balancing the life of the student-athlete, evidenced by the teams' multiple appearances in post-season competition as well as documented academic success and community-service involvement. Sign up at @GCBobcats on Twitter and Facebook for up-to-the-minute reports, and visit GCBobcats.PhotoReflect.com to purchase photo prints from home athletic contests.