Mississippi Gulf Coast got another split Saturday in the Wildcat Invitational at Poplarville, rallying for a 3-2 win against Marion Military in the opener before losing 3-0 to No. 3 LSU Eunice.
"I thought we played really well," Lady Bulldogs coach Kenneth Long said. "We got that big win the first game, then we battled LSU-E really hard."
Gulf Coast (3-3) was down 1-0 in the fifth in the first game when Briana Shores (Fr., Richland/Richland) drew a bases-loaded walk with two outs to tie the game. Hannah Hembree (So., Pascagoula/Pascagoula) followed with a two-run single.
MMI got a run back in the top of the sixth, but Bryley Rodriguez (Fr., Beau Chene/Cankton, La.) didn't allow anything else to get the win in relief. She had entered with a runner at second in the fifth, hit the first batter but then got three straight strikeouts. Rodriguez (1-1) allowed two hits in three innings, striking out four and walking one.
"I told them I thought when she came in, she put the team on her shoulders," Long said. "She just carried us for a while. She did a phenomenal job."
Marsha' Hunt (Fr., Philadelphia/Philadelphia) and Hembree had two hits.
In the second game, LSU-E got a pair of solo home runs, and Gulf Coast couldn't manage to push anything across. Kristen Cade (Fr., Harrison Central/Saucier) struck out nine and allowed six hits to drop her first of the season.
The Lady Bulldogs travel Tuesday to Alabama to play Enterprise State. First pitch is set for 1 p.m.
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