Schreiner University’s softball team battled Sunday afternoon, playing a doubleheader where both games were decided in the final inning — both times resulting in losses for the Mountaineers.
Hardin-Simmons edged the host Mountaineers 2-1 and 3-1 in the non-conference games that served as the season-openers for both teams.
In the first game, delayed briefly when a hawk dropped a dead pigeon in front of the Hardin-Simmons dugout, the Mountaineers rallied to tie the game 1-1 on a sacrifice fly by Kaylee Culpepper that scored Rylee Ohlaussen.
Culpepper, who came in as a relief pitcher, gave up an RBI single in the seventh inning that put the Cowgirls on top 2-1.
The Mountaineers had an opportunity in the bottom of the seventh with two on and one out, but first baseman Kennedy Moody lined into a game-ending double play. Culpepper took the loss in relief. Bri Wodtke, who started the game, got a no-decision but pitched four solid innings — giving up a run, five hits and striking out two.
In the second game, the Mountaineers rallied to tie the game in the sixth when Moody smacked a double that scored centerfielder Daniel Pedraza.
With Moody pitching in relief for Culpepper, Howard-Simmons scored twice in its half of the seventh inning to seal the victory.
The loss spoiled the debut of Schreiner’s first-year coach Melissa Hansen, whose team is picked to finish fourth in the Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference.
Schreiner University softball coach Melissa Hansen chats with her team between innings on Sunday.
Bri Wodtke was Schreiner's starting pitcher on Sunday.