ATLANTA -- Berry College battled with a veteran Emory University softball team, but lost, 4-2 in 8 innings, in the Atlanta Regional Final on Sunday.
The Vikings had their chances to force the second game, but left 12 runners on the base in the contest. BC also had the winning run on third base in the bottom of the seventh and on first in the eighth.
Micah Scharff led off the game with a home run to left field for visiting Emory. Howard then gave up a double before settling down and retiring the next three batters.
The Vikings loaded the bases in the first inning, but could not push a runner home. Berry left a runner on second base in the second inning, too.
The Eagles then capitalized on Berry's first error of the regional, and Emory took a 2-1 lead in the third inning.
The game was a pitcher's duel between Howard (20-3) and File (17-4). Howard allowed 7 hits and struck out 4, walked none and gave up 3 earned runs in 8 innings. File scattered 8 hits in 7 2/3 innings.
The Vikings got three runners on base in the bottom of the seventh. However, Brittany Tuttle was called out after she left first base early. Rachel Bartoe later flew out to right field with runners on the corners to end the frame.
In the top of the eighth inning, Hannah Sendel knocked a two-run homer to give Emory a 4-2 lead.
The Vikings loaded the bases in the eighth inning. Tuttle lined-out to shortstop with one out and Kenzie Fleming then was doubled-off at third base to end the game.
Three Vikings earned All Atlanta Regional honors: Tuttle; Ferrell and Kylie Aiken.
"Congratulations to a great Emory program as we always enjoy battling them," said Berry Head Coach Cori Thiermann. "Today our team showed what they have all season: They never gave up and played until the end."
Emory (34-7) advances to the Super Regional this weekend against Texas Tyler.
The Vikings end their best-ever softball season with a 34-8 record. Berry loses no players to graduation.
See post-game interview with Coach Thiermann HERE.