Eagles Sweep Past Catamounts, 1-0 and 6-5
CULLOWHEE, N.C. - Georgia Southern (12-17, 4-1 SoCon) Softball took a doubleheader sweep over Western Carolina (13-14, 0-5 SoCon) on Saturday (March 19th) afternoon. The Eagles took the opener 1-0 as senior Brianna Streetmon (Winder, Ga.) went the distance for the shutout. In game two, GSU silenced a late Catamount rally to take the slender 6-5 victory. Junior Marie Fogle (Rincon, Ga.) started both games with leadoff home runs in the first inning to catapult the Eagles to an early 1-0 lead.
"We found a way to step up at the plate and keep making adjustments to put the ball in play," said Head Coach Maggie Johnson. "We hit the ball hard and made things happen all day. Our pitchers and defense made the plays when we needed them to shut down their late really. I'm proud of the team effort we gave today."
-GAME 1 -
Fogle started the Georgia Southern first inning with a towering home run over the fence in centerfield. The long-ball was her league-high seventh of the season and her fourth to lead off the game.
In the fifth inning, Western Carolina was forced to make a pitching change when Tabby Douberley (Clyo, Ga.) lined a ball up the middle and hit WCU's Katie King in the kneecap. The ball ricocheted to first base where Douberley was retired. King was replaced in the circle by Bekah Burkett.
Western Carolina put runners on first and second with one out in the bottom of the sixth off a pair of singles. Streetmon worked out of the jam to preserve the shutout with an inning left to play.
King returned for the Catamounts in the top of the seventh after Burkett walked the bases loaded with two outs in the frame. She ended the Eagle threat in the seventh as a fly out ended the inning.
In the bottom of the seventh, Streetmon retired the Catamount side in order to cement the 1-0 victory for the Eagles. She moves to 6-6 on the season and 2-1 in SoCon games. She scattered three hits and struck out six without allowing a walk.
Fogle started game two in style with a home run to lead off the game. The ball sailed over the right field fence. It was her eighth home run of the season and fifth to leadoff a game.
Junior Hanna Ennis (Snellville, Ga.) singled down the left field line and made it to third base later in the same inning with two outs. A hard hit ball to the Catamount shortstop was booted, which allowed Ennis to score and give the Eagles a 2-0 lead after a half inning of play.
Ennis opened the third inning with a double down the left field line, but was replaced by pinch runner Nicole Benton (Wrightsville, Ga.). A ground out by junior Mackenzie Williams (Baxley, Ga.) moved her to third and a sacrifice fly by Morrill plated Georgia Southern's third run of the day.
Consecutive hard hit balls by Megen Smith (Springfield, Ga.) and Andrea Tarashuk (Flemington, N.J.) put runners on second and third with two outs and forced Western to remove their starting pitcher. The relief pitcher, King, struck out Douberley to strand two runners in scoring position.
Western Carolina broke up Smith's no-hitter bid in the third inning when a single by Haley Pace singled to right field. Amelia Griffin, who walked earlier in the inning, reached third on the hit and scored on an error by the Georgia Southern left fielder. The run cut the GSU advantage to 3-1.
Georgia Southern responded in the top of the fourth when Fogle's RBI double to left field brought Kelly Burnett in for the score with one out. After a line out by Ennis, Williams cleared the bases with a home run to right field. Her two-run long-ball gave Georgia Southern a 6-1 lead.
The Catamounts answered for three runs in the bottom of the frame, which included a two-run home run of their own with one out. Freshman Allie Miles (Dacula, Ga.), who replaced Smith after the home run, retired the side with two strikeouts. The runs cut Georgia Southern's advantage to 6-4.
A two-out single by Fogle in the sixth left the junior just a triple shy of hitting for the first cycle in the history of Georgia Southern softball. She stole second and saw Ennis earn a walk, but both runners were stranded to end the inning.
With the Eagles holding their 6-4 lead entering the bottom of the seventh, a leadoff walk by Miles ended her outing. Streetmon relieved Miles for her second appearance of the day.
The Catamounts' rally began when a fielding error put runners on first and second with no outs and a single down the left field line brought the WCU leadoff hitter around third. A relay throw from Eagle right fielder Smith cut down the runner for the first out. With runners in scoring position, a single plated one run, but Smith fired another relay to get the second out at the plate. Streetmon struck out the final batter to earn her second save of the season.
Miles was credited with the victory, her fifth of the season. She worked two and two-thirds of an inning and struck out five Catamounts.
The Eagles close the weekend series on Sunday afternoon against the Catamounts starting at 1 p.m.
Fans may follow all the action of the 2011 Georgia Southern Softball season by visiting GeorgiaSouthernEagles.com/softball or check in for scores at twitter.com/GSScores or facebook.com/GSAthletics for updates.
- Category: Softball
- Published on Saturday, 19 March 2011 18:08