IRONDALE, Ala. — One out was all that stood between Southern softball and advancing one game closer to the program’s first SWAC tournament final since 2009.
Leading 6-2 in the bottom of the seventh, Southern surrendered a four-run lead before Alabama State’s Jenna Mae Thorne hit a game-winning homer to lift the top-seeded Hornets to a 7-6 win in nine innings Thursday at Shea Brothers Softball Complex.
SU pitcher Delphia Holmes, who threw 137 pitches and battled in 8.2 innings, was charged with the loss. She allowed seven runs on 12 hits with three strikeouts.
Holmes struck out ASU’s lead off batter in the seventh, but consecutive singles from Britney Wilson and Laura Aguilar ignited the Hornets’ rally. A Valerie Centeno RBI double, followed by a two-run double from Thomas, trimmed SU lead to 6-5 before pinch-hitter Charlene Castro’s RBI single tied the game.
Holmes retired the next six ASU batters before Thomas sent the first pitch over the right field wall. She finished 3-for-4 with four RBIs. SU third baseman Jamari Greer went 3-for-4, including a three-run blast that produced the Lady Jaguars’ first lead.
After four scoreless innings and trailing 1-0, SU responded to score three runs in the fifth and two in the sixth.
Catcher Kiara Suttles’ sacrifice fly extended the lead to 6-2.
SU will look to avoid elimination when it faces Mississippi Valley Friday at 11 a.m. in a rematch of Wednesday’s opening-round game.