Feb. 15, 2013
GAINESVILLE, Fla. - Western Carolina softball (4-2) picked up a pair of wins in the first day of action at the Lipton Florida Invitational, defeating UNC Wilmington 4-1 and Charleston Southern 2-0, Friday at KSP Stadium.
Western Carolina 4, UNC Wilmington 1
Sophomore pitcher Jordan Garrett (2-2) tied her career-high with 12 strikeouts and gave up one run and three hits in Western Carolina's 4-1 win over UNC Wilmington. It was the second time in as many weeks Garrett had recorded 12 strikeouts in a game.
The Catamounts scored three runs in the bottom of the first inning, against the Sea Hawks, to set the tone of the game. Amelia Griffin drew a lead-off walk and senior Jordan Fulton laid down a sacrifice bunt to move Griffin to second. Senior Shemekia Scotton drew the second walk of the game to place runners on first and second. A single by senior Amber Steinhardt loaded the bases and a walk by Haley Pace sent in Griffin for the first run of the game. Sophomore catcher lined out to second base but a throwing error by UNC Wilmington plated Scotton and Steinhardt for the second and third runs of the inning.
After a scoreless second inning, both teams scored a run in the third inning. UNC Wilmington got on the board off a pair of doubles in the inning. Morgan McCann led off with a double and scored from an RBI double by Lauryn Buckworth.
Western Carolina answered with a run of its own in the bottom of the third. Senior Jordan Fulton hit her first triple of the season and rounded home off an RBI single by Scotton.
Both teams went scoreless the next four innings. After giving up the RBI double early in the third inning, Garrett sat down eight straight batters before Buckworth pounded a lead-off single to start the sixth. Garrett closed out the game by sitting down the next six batters.
Chastain was 2-for-3 in the game for Western Carolina. Overall, the Catamounts had five hits in the game and did not commit an error in the game.
Carolina 2, Charleston Southern 0
Senior pitcher Amber Steinhardt tossed the first shutout of the season for the Catamounts with a 2-0 win over Charleston Southern to close out day one action at the Lipton Florida Invitational. Steinhardt went five innings allowing four hits. Freshman Mallory Broome tossed the fifth inning and Garrett closed out the game by pitching in the seventh.
Western Carolina scored a pair of runs in the top of the second inning and it proved to be all the offense the Catamounts needed for the win. With two outs, after a double play erased Pace who led off the inning with a walk, freshman Taylor Sigmon ripped a double to right center field. Sophomore Megan Crowe hit the second double of the inning to send Sigmon around to score and Crowe scored from an RBI single by freshman Amber Kimrey.
With the 2-0 lead, Steinhardt went back to work going three more innings giving up a walk and a hit. Steinhardt got into a bit of a jam in the sixth inning with a pair of singles and a walk to start the inning loading the bases wit no outs. Broome came into the game bookending a pair of strikeouts and fly out to third base to get out of the inning.
Garrett closed out the game entering in the seventh inning. She struggled a bit hitting a pair of batters but got a strikeout and a two ground outs to end the inning and the game.
The Catamounts had six hits in the game with Sigmon going 2-for-3. Scotton extended her hitting streak, to start the season, to six.
Western Carolina will face Charleston Southern again at 9:15 a.m. Saturday and then No. 5 Florida at noon in day two action of the Lipton Florida Invitational.