April 29, 2006
Seniors Tara Hersey and Lee Lara wanted to make sure their last weekend in a Stephen F. Austin uniform was a memorable one as they each knocked out home runs to break a 21-year old school record for the most home runs in a season as SFA defeated Southeastern Louisiana, 11-0 and 8-0, in Saturday's Southland Conference doubleheader from Hoya Field.
In the bottom of the first inning of Game 1, Lara smacked a three-run shot over the left center field wall on the 13th pitch of her at-bat. The home run was her eighth of the season, breaking Holly Nuber's record set in 1985. In the next at-bat, Jessica Tullos walked and advanced to third on Hersey's right field single that was just inches away from going over the right center field fence. Tullos then scored on a wild pitch to give the Ladyjacks a 4-0 advantage after one inning of play.
In the very next inning, Crystal Dahlquist and Lara drew back-to-back walks and advanced a base on Tullos' center field single. Hersey then hit a grand slam to left center, tying Lara for the school record with her eighth home run of the year and increasing SFA's lead to 8-0.
Hersey would tack two more runs to SFA's tally with a two-run shot to center field to take ownership of the season home run record with her ninth home run to give the Ladyjacks their eventual final score of 11-0 in five innings.
Hersey finished the game going 3-for-3 with three runs scored and six RBI. Lara was 1-of-2 with two runs scored and three RBI. Senior Traci Moore pitched a complete game, giving up five hits in five innings and striking out four.
In the second game, Hersey and Lara each had a double together with Dahlquist and Kim Daley. With the score tied at zero through two and a half innings, SFA jumped out to a five run lead in the bottom of the third. Hersey hit a two-run double to score Lara and Tullos and then scored on a Nicole Carter single. Carter crossed the plate when Kelsey Boland hit a single to center field to collect her second hit of the game and the first RBI of her Ladyjack career. Boland scored the fifth run of the inning on Daley's double to left field.
The Ladyjacks increased their lead in the fourth inning as Dahlquist's double allowed Benet Higgs to score from second. Dahlquist then crossed the dish on Lara's double to right center. Crystal Garcia, who was pinch running for Tullos, scored on a single by Carter to extend SFA's lead to 8-0.
Carter was 2-for-3 from the plate with two RBI and a run scored and was just as productive from circle, pitching four perfect innings before giving up a single in the top of the fifth. The next batter, however, hit a one-out line drive to the shortstop for the 6-3 double play to end the game with a final score of 8-0.
The wins gives SFA a 19-28 overall record while moving their SLC record to 8-15. The Lady Lions fall to 10-35 on the year while pushing their SLC mark to 6-20.
The Ladyjacks will wrap up the 2006 season on Sunday with the series' finale against Southeastern Louisiana starting at noon from Hoya Field.