#1 Saints Season Comes to an End in NCAA National Semifinals
SALEM, VA – The #1 team in the country saw their season
come to a close two wins shy of a National Championship, falling
8-1 to #2 Lock Haven in the semi-finals of the 2009 NCAA Division
II Softball Championships Sunday afternoon at the Moyer Sports
The Saints fall in back-to-back games for the first time this year, putting a lid on the most successful season in school history with a record of 50-5. North Georgia captured the Peach Belt Conference Regular Season Championship, PBC Tournament Championship, NCAA Southeast Dahlonega Regional Championship, and the NCAA Southeast Super Regional Dahlonega Championship to advance to their first-ever Division II College World Series.
North Georgia claimed the nation’s top ranking on May 6, 2009, and won a pair of games at the Division II College World Series in dramatic comeback fashion, but could not get past Lock Haven in the Semi-final round to extend their season. The Lady Eagles improve 50-6 on the season and will advance to the National Championship game Monday afternoon to take on Alabama-Huntsville for the Division II Title.
Lock Haven picked up right where they left off against the Saints earlier in the day, scoring four first-inning runs on five hits to jump on top 4-0 in the opening frame. The Lady Eagles then added two more runs in the second inning, using a pair of hits and a key North Georgia error to plate two more runs.
The Saints had their lone bright spot in the fifth inning as Hilary Cox connected and launched her sixth home run of the season down the left field line to cut into the Lock Haven lead and make it 6-1.
The Lady Eagles added single runs in the fifth and sixth innings to extend their lead to 8-1, a margin that held true to the final out.
Sarah Phillips (39-3) was denied a victory for the second straight game, tossing just 1.0 inning and allowing four runs, all earned, on five hits while striking out one. The First-Team All-American will end the season second in the nation in wins, sitting at 59 wins after her sophomore year at North Georgia.
Senior Kaelin Farrington played in her final game for North Georgia, as the lone graduate on the squad led the Saints to their highest finish in school history.