TYLER--The No. 8 UT Tyler softball team swept an important double-header with the No. 19 team in the nation, Louisiana College, 4-3, 10-3 on Wednesday evening. The wins improve the Patriots record to 27-5 overall and 14-2 in the American Southwest Conference.
Game one started like a true top-20 matchup, with both teams matching the other teams moves.
UT Tyler struck first, scoring three runs in the bottom of the third inning. Brittney Batten knocked in the first run of the game with a RBI single, while Taylor Petrick had the big hit of the inning, knocking in two with a single to left field.
The Wildcats (21-7, 10-6) answered right back in the top of the third inning. Meggie Burkett knocked in the first run with a single to left, and then was knocked in on Devan Greene's RBI triple to right center. Daniele Wilson then tied the game, when her roller to shortstop was bobbled by Brittany Hay.
Both teams threatened to put more runs up in the next few innings, but were unable to captalize off of the other teams mistakes, until the bottom of the seventh inning.
After pinch-hitter Taylor Sells reached base on a single, Hay pinch ran and advanced to third on a sacrifice bunt by Batten. Senior Katelyn Thomason then got the walk-off single to end game one, 4-3.
In game two, UT Tyler scored a run in the first three innings, including a double by former LC player Carli Wheeler, giving the Patriots a 3-0 lead heading into the top of the fourth inning.
Louisiana College once again fought back in the top of the fourth, highlighted by a two-run double by Laura Gulotta-Parish.
With the score tied, 3-3 in the bottom of the fifth inning, Thomason put the game out of reach with a grand slam to left field, making the score 7-3, and was followed by Petrick who belted a solo shot for back-to-back homeruns.
UT Tyler added two more runs the rest of the way, including another Wheeler RBI in the sixth inning.
Thomason finished the double-header going 4 for 9, with three runs and five RBI while teammate Taylor Petrick finished 3 for 6 with three RBI.
The Patriots now head into a four-game series against East Texas Baptist, two games on Saturday in Marshall and two-games in Tyler on Sunday with first place in the ASC east up-for-grabs.