March 13, 2011
ATLANTA – Behind strong pitching by senior Kristen Adkins and sophomore Hope Rush, the Georgia Tech softball team (17-4) won two games on Sunday afternoon at the Springhill Suites Buckhead Classic as head coach Sharon Perkins picked up her 200th career win. The Yellow Jackets beat Belmont 12-2 in five innings and the shut out Georgia State 1-0 running their winning streak to 10 in a row.
Perkins is now 200-77 in just over four seasons as head coach of the Yellow Jackets. She is a two-time ACC Coach of the Year, has led the Jackets to four straight NCAA Tournaments and ACC regular season and tournament titles in each of the last two years.
In game one Sunday, sophomore Hope Rush hit a pair of two-run home runs as the Yellow Jackets cruised to a 12-2 win over Belmont. Junior Kelsi Weseman also went deep for Tech as she and Rush had four RBI apiece. Nine different players recorded at least one hit in the game and all 17 healthy Yellow Jackets played.
Senior Kristen Adkins (8-2) got the win for the Yellow Jackets as she pitched three hitless innings. The McKinney, Texas, native walked one and struck out seven batters. Freshman Lindsey Anderson came in to pitch for the Yellow Jackets in the fourth inning and allowed a two-run home run off the bat of Ashley Byers breaking up the no-hitter and the shutout. It was also the first run allowed by Georgia Tech pitching in 29.1 innings.
In game two, a RBI double by freshman Alysha Rudnik in the fourth inning was the only scoring as Tech beat Georgia State 1-0. Rush (6-2) started and pitched the first 4.1 innings allowing two hits and three walks to go along with seven strikeouts. Adkins then came in and pitched 2.2 innings of scoreless relief for her third save of the year. She did not allow a hit or a walk and fanned one. She entered the game with runners at first and third and just one out in the fifth inning and was able to get out of the jam.
The Yellow Jackets scored five first inning runs against Belmont and never looked back. The big blow in the opening frame was a two-run home run off the bat of sophomore Hope Rush, her sixth homer of the season. Junior Kelsi Weseman drove in a run on a triple and junior Kate Kuzma had a RBI ground out to begin the scoring. Weseman scored the final run of the inning on a wild pitch.
Tech blew the game open with five more runs in the third inning. Rush hit her second two-run homer of the game and the Yellow Jackets also took advantage of three Belmont errors in the inning to score three more runs. Senior Christy Jones drove in one of the runs on a RBI single and Weseman hit a solo home run. It was her sixth of the season and second one in as many games.
The Jackets added another two runs in the fourth inning as a two-run single down the left-field line by Weseman made it 12-0.
Against Georgia State, the game was scoreless until Tech scored an unearned run in the bottom of the fourth inning. Senior Kristine Priebe reached on an error by Georgia State third baseman Megan Kallatsa and then scored a couple of batters later on a double to the wall in left-center by freshman Alysha Rudnik.
In the top of the fifth, the Panthers had runners at first and third with just one out when Adkins came into the game in relief of Rush. Adkins got the second out of the inning when Rudnik made a lunging grab on a line drive at third base. After hitting a batter to load the bases, Adkins got clean-up hitter Lauren Jones to ground out and end the inning.
McCall Langford did her job holding the Jackets to just the one run on three hits as Tech was unable to add any insurance in the bottom of the sixth inning. It didn’t matter as Adkins worked around a two-out error to preserve the win.
The Yellow Jackets will close out the homestand on Tuesday, March 15 as they host Georgia Southern in a doubleheader at Mewborn Field. First pitch in game one is set for 3 p.m. and live video, audio and stats will be available at RamblinWreck.com.
Follow Georgia Tech Softball all season at www.Twitter.com/GaTechSoftball and on Facebook.