Feb. 24, 2012
CLEARWATER, Fla. – On day one of the NFCA Leadoff Classic at the Eddie C. Moore Complex, the Georgia Tech softball team dropped a pair of games to DePaul and No. 9 Tennessee, Friday. The Jackets fell to the Blue Demons 4-2 in a tight game, dropping a9-0 decision later in the day to the Vols.
Tech evened out its all-time series with DePaul at three games apiece, including a 2-2 record at the NFCA Leadoff Classic. The Jackets drop to 1-3 all-time against Tennessee.
Hope Rushgot the start in both games for the Jackets pitching 12 innings on the day, striking out eight while allowing seven runs, just three earned.
Caroline Hiltonwas 2-for-6 on the day for Tech, picking up a hit in each game. Raven Chavanne, Tennessee’s leadoff hitter was 3-for-4 on the day while Tory Lewis was a perfect 3-for-3.
In game one, DePaul was the first to strike in the top of the third inning. With two outs on the board, Lynsey Cieziki sent a screeching liner right at Danielle Dike, but the third baseman couldn’t quite handle it allowing Cieziki to reach first. DePaul took advantage of the error using a single to right field, a double to left and a single up the middle to put the Blue Demons on top 4-0.
Tech responded in the bottom half of the inning getting its first run on the board via some small ball. Ashley Thomas took advantage of a Blue Demon error, for the second straight at bat, and moving to second on a stolen base. Thomas advanced to third on a groundout to short by Kate Kuzmaand crossed the plate on a DePaul illegal pitch making the score 4-1 in favor of DePaul.
Tech put another run on the board in the bottom of the fifth in almost exactly the same fashion. This time it was Chelsie Thomas that got on base via a walk. She stole second, moved to third on a sacrifice bunt by Hayley Downs and scored on a chopper to first by Ashley Thomas. That would be it for the Jackets who left five runners on base throughout the game.
In the late game, Tennessee was the first team to put a run on the board, again in the top of the third. The Vols were the ones to use small ball to their advantage in this game getting their first two runners in the inning on base with bunt hits. A sacrifice bunt advanced the runners each a base and a single chopped over the head of Dike that Ashley Thomaskept in the infield, but allowed the first run of the game to score. A single through the left side got just past Thomas and into left field allowing Raven Chavanne to score from second to put the Volunteers up 2-0.
The Vols added to their lead in the fifth as Lauren Gibson blasted a solo shot to left centerfield. They kept the runs coming in the sixth inning. Tech mad a pitching change putting Karly Fullemon the mound for her first appearance of the year. Fullem started things off with a walk, and it looked like she had Cat Hosfield right where she wanted her, but a couple illegal pitches changed what would be the first out of the inning, into an RBI single to left field starting off a Vol rally. Via four hits, Tennessee earned four runs to bring its lead to 7-0.
The Jackets will return to action at the NFCA Leadoff Classic on Saturday afternoon at 1 p.m. against UMass followed by a 3:30 p.m. meeting with Mississippi State.
Keep up to date with the Georgia Tech Softball team all season long at www.RamblinWreck.com as well as twitter.com/GaTechSoftball and facebook.com/GTSoftball