ATLANTA -- Kendra Marshall's walk-off single in the bottom of the 10th scored Haleigh Daniels with the winning run as Trine defeated Emory 6-5 in Game 1 of the Atlanta Super Regional.
Marshall's walk-off capped a back-and-forth game that saw the Thunder face their final out twice and rally back to keep the game alive. The rally started with a Haleigh Daniels single and an error. After a groundout, Marshall ripped a sharp ground ball through the middle as Daniels raced home with the winning run. Jamie Schnarr homered, doubled and drove in three runs to pace the offensive effort. Daniels finished with two hits. The two teams will square off on Saturday at 1 p.m. ET in Game 2 of the series. A Trine win would give the Thunder their first berth in the NCAA national championships in Tyler, Texas. Emory would have to win twice to advance.
Emory got right on the board in the top of the first, as a leadoff double by Ally Kresthold and a hit batter put two on with none out. After a pair of pop outs, Micah Scharff singled through the left side to bring home Kresthold and make the score 1-0. Fuller escaped further damage with a strikeout to set the new single-season school-record.
Rachel Harris singled through the left side to get thing started in the Trine second. After a sac bunt by Leah Hall, Schnarr launched a no-doubt two-run homer to right-center on an 0-2 pitch to give the Thunder a 2-1 lead. The homer was her third of the season.
A one-out double by Searles set the table for another Trine run in the third. Kaitlyn Clark followed by ripping a single through left side to make the score 3-1. The RBI gave Clark 62 RBI on the season, one shy of tying the school-record set by Andi Gasco in 2013.
The Eagles rallied to tie in the fifth, putting two runners on with two out in the inning. First-Team All-UAA third baseman Hannah Sendel brought home both runners with a two-run single to knot the score at 3-3.
It was the bottom Emory's lineup that gave the Eagles the lead in the sixth. A one-out triple by Lauren Gorodetsky was followed by an RBI-single by No. 9 hitter Alyssa Pollard to makes the score 4-3.
The Thunder went to the seventh needing a run and got just that, as Clark drew a leadoff walk to set the table. Marshall executed a sacrifice bunt to move Clark into scoring position. A flyout had the Thunder facing their final out and a 2-2 count had Hall down to her final strike, but she ripped a single right back through the middle to tie the score and send the game to extras.
Fuller worked 7.2 solid innings, allowing four earned runs on eight hits. She walked two and struck out four. Fuller is now Trine's single-season leader in strikeouts, with 234 this season.
A single by Megan Light, a walk drawn by Sendel and an error loaded the bases with one out in the ninth. Melody Carter came through with an RBI-single through the right side.
Once again, the Thunder got down to their final out and managed to stay alive. After Hall reached on a fielder's choice, Schnarr came through with another big hit to keep TU alive. She ripped a double into the left field corner, and Hall narrowly beat the throw to the plate to send the game to the 10th tied at 5-5.
That set the stage for Marshall's walk-off. Justine Robles picked up the victory with 2.1 innings of clutch relief work.