Softball Reaches SoCon Tournament Championship Game
It marks the third straight title game appearance for the Eagles who won in 2006 but the first out of the winner’s bracket. GSU rebounded from first-round losses in 2006 and 2007 to reach the championship game.
Junior Robyne Siliga (Oceanside, Calif.) hit a three-run homer in the third inning to cap a four-run outburst. She followed a squeeze bunt by sophomore Nina Iduate (Norcross, Ga.) that plated the first run.
“Nina laid down a good squeeze bunt to score the first run and then Robyne was able to come up in a situation with multiple runners on and she had a great swing,” said GSU head coach Natalie Poole. “I’m just proud we were able to score multiple runs in an inning and keep the momentum going. We just weren’t able to find it again.”
The top three hitters in the GSU lineup accounted for five of the team’s six hits and three of the four runs.
“It definitely makes a difference,” said Poole. “That’s where a lot of momentum is started and any time you can have momentum there or can build off of that, you know you can be successful.”
Siliga (the No. 3 hitter) and senior Aubrey Thweatt (Georgia, Vt.) (leadoff) each collected two hits.
The Spartans got on the board with two runs in the sixth and put runners on first and second with one out in the seventh, but Smith induced a double-play groundball to end the game.
“She did great,” said Poole. “She’s done a good job of coming in to some tough situations. It’s been a little shaky at times but in terms of buckling down and knowing what needed to get done, she’s definitely in there for the fight.”
Senior Melissa Laliberte (Cobourg, Ontario, Canada) earned the win (19-11) to tie the school record for victories in a season. She went the first 5.2 innings and allowed seven hits and both runs.
“I thought that Mel gave us a good start and she kept them off balance long enough before she started to lose some speed, movement and the strike zone,” said Poole.
UNCG starter Amber Harrell took the loss after giving up five hits and four earned runs in three innings of work. Hannah Angel pitched three innings of one-hit relief.
The Eagles await their opponent for a 1:30 p.m. start on Saturday.
- Category: Softball
- Published on Friday, 09 May 2008 00:13