March 9, 2018
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – Georgia Tech softball (12-7) opened Atlantic Coast Conference play on Friday with a 9-5 win over Virginia (8-15). The Jackets kick off ACC play with a win for the first time since 2014.
Head coach Aileen Morales says:
“I’m proud of our team’s resiliency today. We got behind on the road and were able to answer back in the very next frame. There is definitely a lot of work we need to do to clean up our defense but overall I am happy with how we competed.”
How it happened:
The Cavaliers struck first. With the score at 0-0 in the bottom of the fourth, Virginia loaded the bases with three singles off senior Emily Anderson. Anderson walked in two to put the Cavaliers in the lead at 2-0.
Tech responded in the top of the fifth. Freshman Breanna Roper drew a walk to lead off the inning, advancing to second on a single from freshman Cameron Stanford to left center. Junior Katie Krzus reached on a fielder’s choice but an error on the second baseman allowed the Jackets to load the bases. Sophomore Rebecca Prairie made it to first on a fielder’s choice to keep the bases loaded with Roper out at home on the play. With two outs on the board and bases loaded, Hooper singled to center field, plating Stanford from third to cut the lead to 2-1. Sophomore Crosby Huckabay followed up with a walk to bring Krzus in for the tying run at 2-2. Junior Kaylee Ellebracht drove in two with a single to put the Jackets in front 4-2.
The Cavaliers cut the Jackets’ lead to one in the bottom of the fifth. An error by freshman Lilly Hooper at second allowed the Cavaliers to get on base and a double drove in the run to bring the score to 4-3.
The Jackets added three to their tally in the top of the sixth. Roper took her second straight walk and an error on a sacrifice bunt from Stanford moved Roper to second and landed Stanford safe at first. A passed ball allowed both to advance. With runners at second and third, senior Draven Sonnon doubled to left field, plating Roper and Stanford to push Tech’s lead to 6-4. A fly ball off the bat of Krzus advanced Sonnon to third and Prairie doubled to left center to bring home Sonnon, adding the seventh run for the Jackets.
Tech put up two more in the top of the seventh. Senior Kelsey Chisholm drew a walk, and sophomore Sydney Stavro entered to pinch run. Roper drew her fourth walk of the game and the pair advanced on wild pitches. A sacrifice fly to deep right field off Stanford’s bat drove in Stavro for the eighth tally. Sonnon stepped up and hit her second double of the game bringing in Roper for the ninth and final run.
The Cavaliers added two in the bottom of the seventh but the Jackets held onto their lead for the 9-5 victory.
Tech finishes out the series with the Cavaliers in Charlottesville tomorrow, Saturday, March 10 with a doubleheader. The games are slated for 12 p.m. and 2 p.m. on ACC Network Extra.