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    Today In SEC Softball: March 7

    Georgia 8, Furman 0
    Coastal Carolina 2, South Carolina 1
    Coastal Carolina 5, South Carolina 2
    Alabama 7, Samford 3
    LSU 10, Nicholls State 2
    Florida 1, Mississippi State 0
    Florida 8, Mississippi State 5
    Ole Miss 13, Arkansas 0
    Ole Miss 7, Arkansas 6

    No. 7 Georgia Takes 8-0 Win Against Furman

    ATHENS, Ga. — The No. 7 University of Georgia softball team (19-2) took an 8-0 win in six innings against Furman (7-10) on Wednesday night at Jack Turner Stadium.

    The Bulldogs used nine hits, including two each from Tess Sito, Ashley Pauly and Gracie Goulder, to earn the victory. The team also had five two-base hits in the game.

    Sito (5-0) posted the win after striking out a season-high 10 batters and allowing five hits. Furman’s Hannah Bradley (1-5) took the loss, as she gave up two runs on two hits in two innings of work.

    The Bulldogs jumped out of the gates to grab a 2-0 lead in the first, courtesy of runs from Sito and Pauly. Sito led off the inning with a hit and stolen base before Pauly’s double enabled Sito to score. With Pauly on third after a Furman miscue, Kristyn Sandberg scored Pauly to end the inning.

    Georgia made it a 3-0 game in the third after a Sandberg sacrifice fly turned in a run from Sito. Goulder then posted a two-run home run in the fourth to put Georgia ahead, 5-0.

    Pauly earned her second double of the night in the fifth inning to mark the second time this season that the senior has had two doubles in a game. The hit scored Sito from second before Sandberg ripped a double to trade places with Pauly and increase the lead to 7-0.

    Pinch hitter Shelby Altman closed the game in the sixth after she hit the game-winning RBI to secure the 8-0 win.

    Georgia opens SEC play this weekend, as the team travels to Mississippi State to take on the Bulldogs with the opening game Friday, March 9 at 6:30 p.m.

    South Carolina Drops A Pair At Coastal

    Game One Recap:

    CONWAY, S.C. – South Carolina (16-5) dropped a tough one in game one at Coastal Carolina (14-4) 2-1 on Cacia Pierre’s walk-off homer at the CCU Softball Field.

    After failing to get a bunt down on the first three pitches, Pierre sent the 1-2 offering over the wall in right, scoring pinch runner Beth Kassuhn after she replaced Chelsea Pineda after she singled to left to start the frame.

    South Carolina nearly made their first-inning run stand up for the game. Junior shortstop Samie Garcia hit a slow roller to second, but the throw was dropped at first to allow her to reach. She stole second with two down and scored easily on senior third baseman Evan Childs’ double to left.

    Freshman pitcher Katelynn Howser (6-1) took the loss, giving up two earned runs on five hits and two walks in six-plus innings. She struck out five. Kiana Quolas (8-1) got the win, giving up one unearned run on four hits and a walk. She fanned three.

    Garcia singled in the seventh to continue her hitting streak to 20 games, while senior Lauren Lackey and freshman Lacey Rother both added hits.

    Game Two Recap:

    CONWAY, S.C. – A second-inning, two-out rally proved to be the difference as Coastal Carolina (15-4) posted a 5-2 win over South Carolina (16-6) in the second game of Wednesday’s doubleheader at the CCU Softball Field.

    The four runs for the Chanticleers in the second came on five singles, with Kory Hayden starting the frame with one. With two down and runners at the corners, Sara Rasley singled through the right side to start the scoring. After Jessie Winans singled off the Gamecock pitcher Kierstyn White (6-4) to load the bases, Sarah Maples dumped one into right to score two more. Jazmin Daigle followed with another hit to right to make it 4-0.

    Coastal Carolina added another run in the fifth when Hayden hit a ball deep to center to score Brook Donovan after she drew a two-out walk and took second on a passed ball. Hayden was thrown out at second trying to stretch the hit to a double.

    The Gamecocks tried to mount a comeback in the seventh when junior catcher Shelby Gonzales beat out an infield single, bringing up freshman first baseman Olivia Lawrence, who drove the 1-2 offering over the wall in center for her first career homer to make it 5-2. Junior shortstop Samie Garcia followed with a hit deep in the hole at shortstop to extend her hitting streak to 21 games, but the Chanticleers got the final out on a close play at first when senior centerfielder Lauren Lackey hit one to short and nearly beat the throw.

    White took the loss, allowing four earned runs on five hits and a walk in 1.2 innings of work. Chanticleer starter Morgan Mastriania (3-1) got the complete-game victory, giving up two earned runs on six hits and a walk while striking out two.

    South Carolina opens up Southeastern Conference play against Arkansas this weekend. The series begins on Friday at 6 p.m., with start times slated for 2 p.m. on Saturday and 1 p.m. Sunday against the Razorbacks.

    No. 1 Alabama Downs Samford, 7-3

    TUSCALOOSA, Ala. – The No. 1 ranked Alabama softball team capped off its homestand with a 7-3 victory over instate foe Samford, Wednesday night at Rhoads Stadium. With the win the Crimson Tide remains perfect with an 18-0 record.

    Senior Cassie Reilly-Boccia tallied two hits and drove in three runs while freshman Leslie Jury struck out seven in six innings to improve to 6-0 on the season.

    Alabama outhit Samford 9-6 with freshman Jadyn Spencer coming off the bench to collect two hits and two RBI.

    Alabama once again got on the board early this time in a loud way as Reilly-Boccia drilled her third home run of the season. The senior deposited a two-run shot over the wall in right-center to give the Tide a 2-0 lead.

    After senior Jennifer Fenton hit her eighth career triple to place her fourth in the UA career annals, Reilly-Boccia struck again. This time the Yorktown Heights, N.Y., native smacked a double down the line in right to extend the lead to 3-0.

    The Tide pulled away in the fourth inning when it plated four runs. After senior Jazlyn Lunceford scored on an error, Spencer punched a single through the left side to score freshman Danae Hays and senior Olivia Gibson. Fenton then capped the scoring with a RBI groundout to short.

    Samford scored three six inning runs to get on the board. Jury allowed the three runs on six hits and walked two. Senior Amanda Locke struck out two in a perfect seventh inning.

    Alabama will hit the road for the week of spring break as it will open Southeastern Conference play at Kentucky. The two teams will open the series in Lexington on Friday, March 9 at 5 p.m. CT. UA will then head to Oregon for two games in the Pacific Northwest.

    LSU Softball Thumps Nicholls State, 10-2

    THIBODAUX, La. – Ashley Langoni, Kailey McCasland and Dylan Supak ripped two hits apiece, scored five runs and drove home six RBIs as the LSU softball team notched an impressive 10-2 five-inning rout of Nicholls State Wednesday at Colonel Softball Complex.

    “Every win for our team is important,” head coach Beth Torina said. “I thought that was the most aggressive we’ve seen our offense all season. I was really happy to see the players come out the way they did. Ashley, Dylan and Kailey all swung hard, have worked really hard in practice and deserved to have a great night.” 

    LSU (11-7) platted runs in four of the five innings to end a two-game losing streak. Rachele Fico picked up her the sixth win of the season. The junior right-hander tossed four innings of two-run ball on four hits. She notched six strikeouts against one walk.

    Meghan Patterson pitched a spotless inning of relief highlighted by a pair of strikeouts.

    “It definitely wasn’t Rachele’s best day, but she still got the win,” Torina said. “She’s been competing hard for us all season. It was nice to see Meghan look sharp and attack the hitters during her inning of relief.” 

    Langoni and Supak struck for back-to-back home runs with two outs in the first inning to vault LSU to a quick 3-0 lead. For Langoni, it was her team-leading third dinger of the season, while Supak smacked her first career longball.

    Nicholls (4-16) got on the scoreboard during the second inning. Kat Angeles knocked a single to right field and stole second. Three batters later, Leah Andrus cranked a RBI single to make it 3-1.

    LSU fired back with a run in the third inning as Langoni tallied her third RBI of the game on a single up the middle to push the advantage back to 4-1.

    Nicholls responded during the home half of the frame on an Ashley Ray solo home run to draw back to 4-2. Ray finished with two of the four Colonel hits.

    Once again, LSU replied with a run in the fourth inning. Lauren Houston was hit-by-a-pitch and advanced into scoring position on a wild pitch. On a 1-0 offering, Ashleigh Kuhn laced a RBI double to centerfield to place LSU ahead, 5-2.

    The Tigers exploded for five runs and batted around the lineup during the fifth inning. A.J. Andrews and Langoni drew walks, while Allison Falcon reached on a fielder’s choice to load the bases. It was Falcon’s first game back after missing an eight-game stretch due to injury.

    Supak, McCasland and Heidi Pizer laced RBI singles. Kuhn tacked on another run on a RBI groundout for the final margin of 10-2.

    “Allison was a little rusty after being out for so long,” Torina said. “She just needs to get more at-bats, and she’ll get back into the swing of things very quickly. I thought Kuhn did a great job, she’s been another one that has been working hard in practice. I thought she deserved the start  and definitely made the most of her opportunity.”

    LSU returns home Friday to face Mississippi Valley State and Troy as part of the Purple & Gold Challenge at Tiger Park. Friday’s first pitch is slated for 5 p.m.


    No. 3/4 Florida Softball Opens Southeastern Conference Play With Doubleheader Sweep at Mississippi State

    STARKVILLE, Miss. - Gator sophomore ace Hannah Rogers (Lake Wales, Fla.) tossed her third career one-hitter and earned her first save of the season in the circle as the No. 3/4 Florida softball squad improved to 21-1 overall on the season and jumped out of the gates on the Southeastern Conference slate with a sweep over Mississippi State in Starkville. The Gators downed the Bulldogs (14-7, 0-2 SEC) 1-0 and 8-5 in the league-opening twin bill Wednesday at the Mississippi State Softball Stadium.

    Freshman Alyssa Bache (Clearwater, Fla.) earned her fourth win of the season in the nightcap after working 2.1 innings of scoreless relief after classmate Lauren Haeger (Peoria, Ariz.) earned the start in game two. Bache allowed just two hits and retired three by strikeout after MSU put up five runs, just two earned, on three hits in the first 1.2 innings under Haeger's watch. Rogers closed out the final 3.0 in UF's winning efforts for the save, coming up with 11 strikeouts between Wednesday's two appearances.

    Rogers earned the start in the circle in the first of the two games, retiring three Bulldogs in order with her first three strikeouts of the afternoon to set the tone early. She finished the dogfight with her third career complete-game one-hitter, the last being March 17 against Michigan State, along with one versus the Ole Miss Rebels March 18, 2011, to improve to an unscathed 11-0 on the 2012 season. In addition to three career one-hitters now, Rogers also owns two combined one-hitters, one last season, along with one just last weekend versus Gardner-Webb March 3.

    The righty went the distance, allowing one hit and giving up one Bulldog walk, while fanning eight MSU student-athletes. With two outs on the board in the bottom of the fifth, Rogers allowed her first base runner, walking Bulldog Jessica Cooley to spoil a perfect game. MSU kept the momentum going with an Erin Nesbit base hit for the Maroon and White's first hit of the contest, which would count as State's lone hit of the contest.

    Freshman utility player Jess Damico (Gray Summit, Mo.) roped a RBI triple to right center to account for Florida's lone run in the 1-0 victory in the early game, while senior Michelle Moultrie (Jacksonville, Fla.) got the offense going with the first hit of the day for the Gators.

    After leaving the bags loaded in the first and a slow second for the Orange and Blue, Moultrie laid down a perfect two-out bunt single for the Gators' first hit of the day and proceeded to swipe second, her 15th stolen bag of the season, but a pop out ended the third for UF just as the Gators started getting adjusted at the plate.

    It wasn't until the fifth that Florida scratched its first run across home on Damico's RBI triple, her first extra-base hit of the season. Classmate Katie Medina (Downey, Calif.) reached base on balls and scored from first base on Damico's sixth hit of the campaign to take the Orange and Blue up, 1-0.

    A two-out double for junior Kelsey Horton (Valrico, Fla.) in the top of the sixth, her second double of the season and 10th extra-base hit of the year, counted as Florida's third hit of the contest.

    The first-game pitching duel continued through the remainder of the sixth frame and on to the seventh inning, placing zeros on the board for both teams in the shootout.

    Stephanie Becker (7-2) took the loss in game one for MSU, tossing a three-hitter, allowing UF's one run, while walking three Gators. Like Rogers, Becker fanned eight opponents through the complete-game effort.

    In the second of two games with the Bulldogs Wednesday, Florida took advantage of eight walks, while Horton knocked her SEC-leading ninth round-tripper of the year to help propel the UF offense early.

    Florida capitalized on four first-inning walks from starter Lindsey Dunlap to take a 4-0 lead in the first frame, but Mississippi State added its first run of game two on a Sam Lenahan RBI base hit, resulting in a 4-1 ballgame after the initial stanza. Horton's two-run bomb gave Florida a five-run advantage heading to the bottom of the second as Mississippi State called on Shana Sherrod in relief of Dunlap mid-way through the second, but the home team strung together a four-run, three-hit second frame to close the gap, 6-5.

    Seven-hole hitter Erin Nesbit roped a RBI double for one run, while a Ka'ili Smith RBI single in bottom of the second narrowed the Gator margin, 6-3, spurring a pitching change in the circle for the Orange and Blue as Florida traded Haeger for Bache. After walking MSU's Briana Bell, Lenahan struck against Bache with her second hit of the game, a two RBI single that went just over second-baseman Medina's head, to bring the margin, 6-5, in favor of the Gators after two.

    After two-consecutive hits for the Orange and Blue from Damico and freshman Sami Fagan (Dunnellon, Fla.) to kick off the third, the Maroon and White exchanged Sherrod in the circle for game one starter Becker, who effectively settled and held the Gators scoreless in the frame, forcing a foul out and strikeouts to retire the side.

    After action packed first and second stanzas, scoreless third, fourth and fifth frames ensued, as the Gators went with Rogers in the circle in the fifth to close out the mid-week action. Rogers then came on in relief for the final 3.0 to earn her first save of the campaign, allowing one hit and fanning three to finish off the Bulldogs

    Haeger knocked a stand-up one-out double in the top of the sixth, while pinch runner Briana Little (Middleburg, Fla.) moved to third on a wild pitch before sophomore Cheyenne Coyle (West Hills, Calif.) walked. Little scored on a Kasey Fagan (Dunnellon, Fla.) RBI single to right field to make it 7-5, UF, while the Gators executed a double steal as Coyle crossed home and Fagan swiped second for the 8-5 final score in favor of Florida.

    Dunlap moved to 1-2 on the season after giving up UF's first six runs on four hits, while also walking six.


    Ole Miss Sweeps Arkansas

    FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Ole Miss pounded out 31 hits in two games as the Rebels swept a double header at Arkansas to open Southeastern Conference action on Wednesday. Ole Miss run-ruled the Razorback 13-0 in five innings in the first game before winning game two 7-6 in extra innings. Senior Corrine Doornberg went 7-for-9 in the two games with four RBI and three runs, while freshman Allison Brown and senior Cali Overbeck each drove in four runs.

    “What an awesome day,” said Ole Miss head coach Windy Thees. “That was a total team effort out there day and that is want we strive for. We got some big, timely hits and Kendall (Bruning) was our workhorse in the circle and gave us a chance to win.”

    Next up, Ole Miss (10-7, 2-0 SEC) will travel to Palo Alto, Calif. for the Stanford Louisville Slugger Classic beginning on Friday. The Rebels will face Cal Poly, Colorado State, James Madison and the host Cardinal in the three-day tournament.

    Game One

    The Rebels pounded out a season-high 17 hits and senior Corrine Doornberg and freshman Allison Brown each drove in three runs, as Ole Miss routed Arkansas for a 13-0 run-rule victory in five innings at Bogle Park.

    Ole Miss jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the top of the first after leadoff hitter Corrine Doornberg and center fielder RT Cantillo both reached on infield singles and stole second and third, respectively. Shortstop Allison Brown then smash a two-out, two-run double to left that plated both Doornberg and Cantillo. Brown scored later in the frame on a throwing error by Arkansas second baseman Serria Bronkey on a Kendall Bruning infield single for Ole Miss’ third run of the inning.

    The Rebels added four more runs in the fourth aided by another throwing error from Bronkey.  With two down and nobody on, right fielder Amanda Hutcheson singled to center and moved to second after third baseman Cali Overbeck singled off the leg of Razorback starting pitcher Chelsea Cohen. After both runners moved up on a wild pitch, Doornberg singled to first base and an errant throw from Bronkey allowed Hutcheson and Overbeck to score and Doornberg to advance to second. Brittany Broome reached on an infield single and stole second to give the Rebels two runners in scoring position. Cantillo then singled up the middle and drove in both runners to give Ole Miss a 7-0 lead.

    Ole Miss exploded for six more runs in the fifth highlighted by a two-RBI single from Lander and RBI singles from Brown, Doornberg and Overbeck. Ladner went 2-for-4 in the game with a single, a double and two RBI, while Doornberg was a perfect 4-for-4 at the plate with a career-high three RBI and three runs scored. Brown went 3-for-4 with three RBI and a run scored and Cantillo was 2-for-3 with two RBI and two runs scored.

    Bruning (8-2) picked up the complete-game win after allowing just two hits and no runs in 5.0 innings of work. She struck out four and walked three in her seventh complete game of the season

    Game Two

    Sophomore center fielder RT Cantillo’s bases-loaded RBI single in the top of the eighth inning lifted Ole Miss to a 7-6 extra-inning victory over Arkansas to complete the double header sweep of the Razorbacks on Wednesday at Bogle Park.

    Ole Miss loaded the bases in the top of the eighth on a pair of singles from Cali Overbeck and Corrine Doornberg and Brittany Broome reached on a fielder’s choice with no outs. Cantillo then laced her 2-2 pitch into right field to plate Overbeck for the game-winning run.

    First baseman Londen Lander gave Ole Miss a 1-0 lead in the top of the first on an RBI single to center that scored Brittany Broome, who had reached on a bunt single earlier in the inning. Ole Miss extended its lead to 3-0 in the second on an RBI single to center from third baseman Cali Overbeck and  a Corrine Doornberg RBI double to center.

    Doornberg was 3-for-5 at the plate with a RBI, while Overbeck went 3-for-4 with three runs scored and an RBI. Ladner added two hits and two walks with an RBI in three at-bats and Broome had two hits and two runs scored.

    Arkansas struck back in the bottom of the second with an RBI double to left center from third baseman Chloe Oprzendek that cut the Ole Miss lead to 3-1. However, designated player Natalie Nimmo responded for the Rebels in the top of the third with an RBI double off the wall in left that scored pinch runner Dallas Hardin and put Ole Miss back on top 4-1.

    Ole Miss added another run in the fourth on a bases-loaded, RBI groundout by Cantillo that scored Overbeck, who had reached on a booted ground ball by Razorback shortstop Clarisa Navarro. Arkansas designated player Devon Wallace hit a three-run home run to straight away in the bottom of the fifth that cut the Rebel to 5-4 after five innings.

    Shortstop Allison Brown roped a RBI double over the right fielder’s head in the sixth that scored Broome, who had walked earlier in the inning, and extended the Ole Miss lead to 6-4. Razorback first baseman Jennifer Rambo tied the game at six in the bottom of the seventh with a two-run homer to center that fell just out of the outstretched glove of Ole Miss center fielder RT Cantillo.

    Freshman Lauren Lindsey earned her first career win after allowing two runs, both earned, on three hits in 2.2 innings. She struck out two and walked two.  Bruning started for Ole Miss and gave up four runs, all earned, on six hits in 5.1 innings. She struck out three and issued three walks.