UAM softball eliminated from GAC tourney

BENTONVILLE — The Arkansas-Monticello softball team’s season came to a close in the Great American Conference Tournament on Friday night.

After defeating Harding 11-8 earlier in the day to stay alive, UAM fell to Henderson State, 11-2 in six innings.

The Cotton Blossoms finished the season with a record of 28-30.

Henderson State (31-24) advanced to face Southern Arkansas late Friday night with the winner advancing to the championship round on Saturday.

Junior Sydney Tipton gave the Blossoms a quick 1-0 lead with an RBI single in the bottom of the first inning. UAM’s final run came in the bottom of the sixth on an RBI double by freshman Korie Parker.

UAM’s other three hits came from freshman McKenzie Rice, senior Beth Johnson and senior Brittany Eitel.

The Blossoms were outhit 14-5 in the loss to the Lady Reddies.

UAM senior starter Courtney Wilson held HSU scoreless through the first three innings before the Lady Reddies came through for two runs in the fourth, five in the fifth and four in the sixth.

Ashlynn White led HSU with a pair of home runs and five runs batted in.

In the opener, junior Katie Slaughter (15-13) earned the win in relief, allowing three runs (one earned) off four hits with two strikeouts and two walks in the final 2 1/3 innings. Harding’s Danielle Hubbard (12-12) took the loss after allowing five runs off four hits in two innings of relief.

The Blossoms cushioned its lead by scoring six runs in the bottom of the fifth inning, highlighted by a three-run home run from senior Channing Tharpe and later a two-run double from Tipton. Those six runs put UAM up 11-5.

The Lady Bisons (32-26) came back to within three with one run in the sixth and two runs in the seventh. Harding left the bases loaded to end the game.