NORFOLK, Va. – North Carolina A&T lost in a slugfest before losing in a pitcher’s duel in non-conference doubleheader softball action at Norfolk State University Field.
The Aggies lost to Norfolk State 15-4 in Game 1 despite freshman Nikki Varela going 3-for-3 with two RBI in the game. In the second game, the Aggies were defeated 1-0 despite senior Mohagony Headen pitching a complete-game two-hitter where she struck out five.
Headen (0-9) took the loss in the after giving up the game’s only run in the fifth inning. NSU’s Shelby Deschamps doubled to center field to open the frame before moving to third on a stolen base. A fielder’s choice by Kylee Lopez allowed Deschamps to score the run. Headen got out of the inning with a fly out and a groundout.
Senior Zadia Davis led the Aggies offensively by going 2-for-3. She opened the game with a single before getting into scoring position by stealing second. Senior Zadaisha Waddell flew out to right field to advance Davis to third. But Davis was stranded at third to end the inning.
Davis’ other single came in the third with one out. But she did not move around the basepaths after two flyouts. It was Skylarr Swain who kept the Aggies in check. She pitched a complete-game three-hitter that included no walks and five strikeouts as she improved to 4-3 on the season. Deschamps went 2-for-2 at the plate for the Spartans.
In the first game, Deschamps also hurt the Aggies as well. She went 2-for-3 with two runs scored and three RBI. Freshman Eternal Fuller scored three of the Aggies four runs. The Spartans benefited from an 11-run second inning off senior starter Waddell.
The big inning came after the Aggies took a 1-0 lead in the first inning. Fuller, Varela and Waddell started the game with singles to load the bases for sophomore Hailee Cutts. But Cutts grounded into a double play. The play did allow Fuller to score. NSU answered in their half of the first before having their huge inning in the second.
N.C. A&T (3-15) did come back with a run in the third thanks to an RBI double from Varela that allowed Fuller, who walked, to score. The Aggies scored two more runs in the fifth as walks issued to Headen and Fuller led to an RBI single from Varela that allowed Headen to score. Varela also scored on the play thanks to a throwing error.
But the Spartans (11-10) had a big enough lead to withstand the Aggies rally. Waddell (1-3) took the loss in the circle while Hunter Halford (5-6) got the win. The Aggies will compete again at 5 p.m., Wednesday, March 20 at Elon.