COLUMBUS, Ga. – The 2023 NFCA Division II Leadoff Classic opened with 20 games at the South Commons Softball Complex on Friday. Carson-Newman, California (Pa.), Georgia Southwestern, Missouri Western, No. 17 UAH and Wingate all came out of day one with 2-0 marks.
After falling behind 2-0 in the first, Carson-Newman, powered by a seven-run second, cruised to an 11-3 five-inning win over Northern State. The Eagles capped of day one with 2-1 win over hometown participant Columbus State. SieAnna Cameron singled home the winning run in the top of the seventh to break a 1-1 deadlock.
The Vulcans enjoyed a successful opening day with a 10-2 (5) victory over Hillsdale, followed by a 7-4 win against Bridgeport. The Griffons recorded 19 hits as they posted 8-1 and 6-2 wins over Ohio Dominican and Bridgeport, respectively.
UAH opened with a 12-4 six-inning win over Georgian Court, before edging No. 25 Wilmington, 1-0, behind a three-hit shutout by Katie Bracken. She fanned 12, did not issue a walk and allowed just a three singles.
Wingate pitchers did not allow an earned run as the Bulldogs earned 4-1 and 7-1 triumphs over Embry-Riddle and West Chester. In the latter contest, Raechel Cutcher scattered five hits, struck out 12 and did not walk a batter in a complete-game effort.
The final undefeated team of the evening was Georgia Southwestern. The Hurricanes opened the morning session with an 8-1 triumph over Charleston and ended the night session with near-perfect game by Sara Bradford. The Canes blanked Shaw 14-0 in five innings and Bradford was a hit-by-pitch away from a perfecto, finishing the contest with nine punchouts.
Also picking up wins on day one were Columbus State, Embry-Riddle, Gannon, Georgian Court, Hillsdale, Ohio Dominican, West Chester and Wilmington.
Action begins at 10:00 a.m. tomorrow with another 20-game slate.
Celebrating 40 years in 2023, the NFCA (National Fastpitch Coaches Association) is the professional organization for fastpitch softball coaches. Known for its highly-regarded Leadoff Classics, the NFCA also educates and supports softball coaches on a variety of different levels: from podcasts to awards, to in-person events and the National Convention.