Softball Team Finishes Strong
By Maurice Berry
On April 3, the Lady Bulldogs held Senior Day and the seniors went out with a bang, winning 5-2 and 12-5 over Elizabeth City State University.
In the first game senior Faline Brown (Inwood, W.Va., Musselman, Hagerstown C.C.), was awesome, striking out eight with only two walks. Errors let the Lady Bulldogs on the board in the first inning and after scoring three runs to start the game the Lady Bulldogs held from there.
BSU sophomore Shanae Smoot (Bel Alton, Md., LaPlata) began the fourth inning with a walk and later scored, increasing the Lady Bulldogs lead to 4-2. Two more Elizabeth City State errors assisted Bowie State to the two-run advantage. Freshman Amanda Hedgepeth (Odenton, Md., Arundel) provided an insurance run in the fifth inning, crossing the plate after a double to left by senior Elizabeth Slater (Glen Burnie, Md., Lenoir-Rhyne Univ.). Hedgepeth ripped a one out double to left field and advanced to third on a throw over to first.
Before the second game the seniors were recognized for their contributions to the team. Brown, who had the lowest ERA in the CIAA, as well as Breaun Garner, Anette Baker, Kelley Alexander and Elizabeth Saldor were honored. These ladies have the most wins of any senior class in possibly any sport in the Bowie State University sports program. They have done it with class, passion and respect.
The ECSU Lady Vikings put three on the Lady Bulldogs field scoreboard in the first inning of game two and opened a 4-0 advantage after 2 ½ innings. Shalai Tabor (Waldorf, Md., Delaware State University) hit a grand slam in the third that tied the game at 4-4 and the Lady Bulldogs went on attack from there. The grand slam was Tabor's CIAA leading 11th home run.
Two days later, the Lady Bulldogs clinched the CIAA East title with a 12-11 and 15-4 sweep of Saint Paul's College. Tabor paced Bowie State with five hits in seven plate appearances, scored five runs and recorded her 12th home run of the season. Brown, Slater, Smoot and Megan Alexander (Damascus, Md., Damascus) tallied three hits each for BSU's Lady Bulldogs in the doubleheader.
The following day, the Lady Bulldogs pounded on Shaw University, 10-2 and 15-1. The women's team's six-game winning streak came to an end on April 11, when they were swept by Wilmington University 4-3 and 12-6. The Lady Bulldogs closed out the 2010 season in great fashion by defeating Saint Augustine College 18-0.
The Lady Bulldogs finish the season 14-1 in the CIAA. They earned the top seed in the Eastern Division in the CIAA Tournament. Tabor was horned as the CIAA Player of the Year and Hedgepeth was named Rookie of the Year. Brown, Tabor and Smoot were named to the CIAA All-First Team honors. Junior Danielle McClay and senior Kelley Alexander were named to the second team. Alexander and Kristen Lee joined Hedgepeth on the rookie team. The Lady Bulldogs finished the season with more than 20 wins.