Eagles Split With Chattanooga on Soggy Saturday
STATESBORO, Ga. - Mackenzie William's sixth inning two-run home run gave the Eagles a 2-0 victory to open the series against Chattanooga. In game two, Chattanooga responded with a 9-4 victory to split Saturday's doubleheader. The Eagles got to 7-0 in league play, the best start to Southern Conference play for Georgia Southern in program history, before dropping game two. The Eagles are 21-12 overall and 7-1 in league play. Chattanooga moves to 18-12 overall and 5-1 in the SoCon.
(Baxley, Ga.) went 4-for-7 in the doubleheader with a 3-for-4 effort in game two, finishing just a triple shy of becoming the first Eagle to ever hit for the cycle.
"Mackenzie (Williams) is a great teammate," Head Coach said to Eagle Vision. "She did a great job with the home run to help us win the game. Sarah (Purvis) pitched a great game once again to help us win game one. The split sets up a big game tomorrow afternoon for us against Chattanooga."
-- GAME ONE --
Starting pitcher (Warner Robins, Ga.) took a no hitter through three and two-thirds of an inning. A Casey Tydinco double in the fourth ended the no-hit bid as the Mocs stranded two runners in scoring position in the frame. Purvis, however, had her string of 27-straight outs ended just one batter prior as she hit the Chattanooga designated player. The streak dated back to Wednesday's game at No. 9 Georgia where Purvis retired the final 16 batters in order.
The Eagles stranded seven runners in the opening three frames with five runners left in scoring position. (Rincon, Ga.) earned hits in each of her three at bats of the game and upped her batting average in the month of March to .576.
Williams broke the deadlock in the bottom of the fifth with a two-run home run down the left field line. It was her fifth home run of the season which ties her for the team lead in long balls. It was also her 18th career home run, moving her into a tie with Aurora Johnson (2004-06) for sixth place all-time at Georgia Southern.
Purvis got into a jam in the top of the sixth with a runner on third with two outs. A walk to Tydinco put runners on the corners for Vivian Morimoto. Purvis got behind 1-0, but rallied with three-straight strikes to retire the Chattanooga catcher for Purvis' 10th strikeout of the afternoon.
The Mocs opened the top of the seventh with a leadoff double as a light rain began to fall around Eagle Field. A wild pitch with one out put the runner on third base. A strikeout to a Chattanooga pinch hitter reduced the Mocs to their final out, which was recorded on a fly out to centerfield.
Purvis allowed just five Chattanooga hits which totaling 11 strikeouts in the contest for her 11th win of the season.
-- GAME TWO -
Williams opened game two with a two-run homer to centerfield. Her second long ball of the day gave the Eagles an early 2-0 advantage for her sixth home run of the season and 19th career four-bagger.
The lead lasted until the third inning when Chattanooga came roaring back with five runs off four hits in the inning. Starting pitcher (Dacula, Ga.) was chased from the game after the first three runs scored. She was replaced by freshman (Warner Robins, Ga.). Two more runs crossed on a single down the right field line, both runs were charged against Miles. Red settled down to get out of the inning with no further damage and a 5-2 Chattanooga lead.
Two more Chattanooga runs came home in the fourth on a two-run home run from Tydinco, giving Chattanooga a 7-2 lead.
With no outs in the fourth, Williams came just a few feet short of her third home run of the day when she mashed a double to centerfield. The ball hit halfway up on the wall as Fogle reached third on the play. A walk to Andrea Tarashuk (Flemington, N.J.) loaded the bases for (Madison, Ga.), who hit a fielder's choice up the middle to plate Fogle. The run cut the Chattanooga lead to 7-3 with three trips to the plate remaining.
With two outs in the sixth, Chattanooga's Morimoto hit a home run down the line that scored two runs and extended the UTC advantage to 9-3.
In the bottom of the seventh, Georgia Southern mounted a rally, benefiting from a Chattanooga throwing error to score the run off Fogle's double down the left field line. Fogle finished the afternoon at 4-for-7 along with Williams. Fogle completes her month of March at .554, hitting six doubles, three triples and three home runs to go with 12 RBI.
The run, however, would be Georgia Southern's last of the game as the Eagles stranded runners on second third to end the game.
The teams return to the diamond on Sunday to conclude the series starting at 1 p.m. from Eagle Field. The game can be seen live on Eagle Vision with live audio commentary on 91.9-FM "The Buzz."
- Category: Softball
- Published on Saturday, 31 March 2012 17:53