ABILENE - Nationally ranked ACU bounced back for an 11-7 win in the second game of a Lone Star Conference doubleheader to earn a split with Texas Woman's at Wells Field.
The Pioneers won the first game, 4-3, in a game that ended in controversial fashion before ACU bounced back to win the second game. The split leaves the No. 19 Wildcats at 15-4 overall and 3-2 in the LSC, while the Pioneers are 18-5 and 4-1. The Wildcats will return to action Wednesday at 2 p.m. when they host St. Mary's in a doubleheader at Wells Field.
ACU head coach Bobby Reeves will not be in the dugout for the first game of that doubleheader after being ejected on Sunday at the end of the first game.
The Wildcats led the first game 3-1 before the Pioneers tied the game in the top of the sixth on a two-run home run home run by Tiffany Weise. The Pioneers then took a 4-3 lead in the top of the seventh on a solo home run to right-centerfield by Jordan Readicker.
That's when things got interesting.
With two outs and runners at second and third in the bottom of the seventh, the Wildcats' cleanup hitter, Kim Briggs, came to the plate with a chance to tie or win the game. But she was intentionally walked to load the bases and set up a force play at any base.
Lyndi Smith - who homered earlier in the game for the Wildcats looped a 1-1 pitch toward second base and Megan Leff. The ball snowconed in her glove and no call was made and Keanna Winkfield apparently tied the score when she crossed the plate.
However, after TWU head coach Richie Bruister came out to appeal the play, the umpires gathered and determined that Leff had caught the ball, ending the game with TWU gaining a 4-3 win. Reeves didn't like the call and argued vehemently with the home-plate umpire about the reversal, earning an ejection and a two-game suspension.
Assistant coach Ashley Reeves was also ejected for arguing the call, meaning former softball assistant coach and current women's soccer coach Casey Wilson - who had come to the game as a spectator - would coach the team, along with Ashley Reeves' husband, Tanyan, and ACU volunteer assistant coach Missy Mendoza.
That trio pushed all the right buttons in the second game as three pitchers - Peyton Mosley, Caitlyn Crain and Shelby Hall - combined to lead ACU to the win. Sara Vaughn and Briggs hit home runs in the second for the Wildcats, who scored three runs in the first inning, three in the second and four more in the fifth to take the win.
Crain - who suffered her first loss of the season in the first game of the doubleheader - picked up the win with three innings of relief in the second game to improve to 8-1 on the season.
Vaughn and Briggs each had two hits and three RBI, while Winkfield was 3 for 4 with a run scored and Smith 2 for 4 with two RBI.
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