The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga softball team salvaged a split in Saturday's Southern Conference doubleheader at Samford, winning 5-1 after being shut out 1-0.
UTC's Katie Henderson pitched an outstanding game in the opener, but the offense was unable to reward her. Henderson struck out nine batters in six innings and allowed only two hits, but both came in the bottom of the fourth inning when a fielder's choice for Samford's Callie Brister brought Megan Dowdy home with the only run of the game.
The Lady Mocs (24-16, 9-4) managed only four hits, two by third baseman Sarah Beth Roberts, and stranded six baserunners.
UTC's offense awoke somewhat in the second game. Nicole Osterman got the visitors on the board with an RBI single in the third inning that scored Anyssa Robles, and shortstop Criket Blanco's two-run single in the fifth extended the lead.
After the Bulldogs (31-13, 7-6) scored a run in the bottom of the fifth, UTC added a pair of insurance runs in the seventh on sacrifice flies by Kaiti Dutton and Jesslyn Stockard.
Blanco finished 2-for-4 and Osterman scored two runs.
Senior Taylor Deason continued UTC's strong pitching day, allowing three hits and two walks in six innings. Henderson pitched a perfect seventh inning with a strikeout to finish the game.
The teams will decide the series in a game today beginning at 2 p.m. EDT.
Lady Vols top A&M
Nationally fourth-ranked Tennessee got revenge after losing Friday's first game of a weekend series at Texas A&M with a 15-2 thrashing of the Aggies on Saturday.
UT shortstop Madison Shipman homered twice and was 3-for-4 with three RBIs in the five-inning rout. Megan Geer, Annie Aldrete and Cheyanne Tarango also homered.
Rainey Gaffin was perfect in the pitching circle for 2 1/3 innings, and Erin Gabriel finished the game, allowing the Aggies two runs on four hits and a walk.
Dogs bite Vols
Georgia's baseball team beat Tennessee for the second day in a row, winning 7-4 in Athens, Ga.
The Bulldogs scored two runs in the first inning and built the lead with a four-run fifth. Georgia first baseman Daniel Nichols went 3-for-4, and he, Nelson Ward and Zack Bowers each knocked in two runs.
Tennessee was led by Nick Senzel, who had two runs and three RBIs.