April 3, 2008
ATLANTA – The Georgia Tech Softball Team (17-23) pounded out 23 hits en route to a doubleheader sweep of Western Carolina (6-25) 4-0 and 8-1 Thursday afternoon at a cold and raw Glenn Field. Senior Aileen Morales and freshman Christy Jones had four hits apiece, while Morales and junior Whitney Haller each had a home run for the Yellow Jackets who have now won 14 straight non-conference home games.
Senior Whitney Humphreys tossed a four-hit shutout with eight strikeouts in game one, while freshman Emily Schreck won her fourth game in five starts with a complete-game, three-hitter in the night cap. Tech had a season-high 14 hits in game two.
Georgia Tech grabbed an early 1-0 lead in the first inning of game one. Senior Aileen Morales led off with a triple to the alley in left-centerfield and came around to score on a ground out to second base by senior Stephanie Butler.
In the top of the second inning, junior Whitney Haller led off with her sixth home run of the season, a solo shot over the fence in left field. It moved her into a tie for the team lead and also within one of Tara Knudsen’s school record of 46.
In the top of the third inning, senior Whitney Humphreys got into a second and third nobody out jam but was able to escape. Casey Camp reached on an infield single, the first base runner of the game for the Catamounts. After Lauren Ross blooped a single just fair behind the third base bad, a passed ball moved both base runners into scoring position. Humphreys came back to get a strikeout and double play, however, to keep Western Carolina off the scoreboard.
The Jackets added another run in the bottom of the third inning to make it a 3-0 game. Senior Savannah Brown got it started with a two-out walk and went to second base when senior Brittany Barnes reached on an infield single. Haller then dumped a single into right field for her second RBI of the day as Brown scored the third Yellow Jacket run.
Tech continued its trend of scoring in every inning as Morales blasted a solo home run to left-centerfield with two outs in the bottom of the fourth inning. It was her third round-tripper of the season.
Western Carolina threatened again in the top of the fifth with two on and one out, but Humphreys used a ground out and another highlight reel catch by Butler in centerfield to get out of the jam. Lauren Ross hit a drive heading towards the right-centerfield gap, but Butler made a catch running towards right field and the fence with her back to the infield.
Humphreys held check in the last two innings and preserved her fourth shutout of the season. She improved to 8-12 with the win as she scattered four hits while not walking a batter and striking out eight. Michelle Tating (4-5) took the loss for the Catamounts as she was charged for four earned runs on eight hits in 3.2 innings. She walked one and struck out one. Lauren Ross pitched 2.1 innings of scoreless relief. She allowed one hit and no walks while striking out two.
Game two saw Western Carolina take a 1-0 lead in the top of the first inning as Jamie Swank and Amber Hawkins successfully pulled off a double steal. The Yellow Jackets came back to tie it in the bottom of the second inning as freshmen Jessica Weaver and Amanda Crow each singled to left field with two outs. After each moving up a base on a wild pitch, freshman Christy Jones singled into left field driving in Weaver with the tying run.
The game remained 1-1 until the bottom of the fifth when the Yellow Jackets opened things up with a four-spot. Jones led things off with a single and then switched places with Morales who reached on a fielder’s choice with Jones being nabbed at second base. After stealing second base, her second of the game and 31st in as many opportunities this season, Morales went to third base on an infield single by Butler. Following a Butler stolen base, Shimandle reached on an infield single and Morales scored the go-ahead run.
With Butler running, Brown laid down a perfect squeeze bunt. Western Carolina first baseman Mollie Fowler fielded the ball and threw home even though Butler was going to be safe. The ball got away from the catcher and Shimandle was able to move to third base on the error. A RBI ground out by Haller and RBI double by Weaver accounted for the final two runs for the Jackets as they now took a 5-1 lead into the sixth inning.
Georgia Tech then put the game out of reach with three more runs in the bottom of the sixth inning. Morales had a RBI triple, senior Brittany Barnes had a RBI single and freshman Amelia Beach recorded her first career RBI with a ground out.
Freshman Emily Schreck got through the seventh inning for her fourth win in five starts as she is now 4-1. She allowed just one earned run on three hits while walking four and striking out one.
Georgia Tech will travel up to Raleigh, N.C., for an Atlantic Coast Conference series with NC State this weekend. The two teams will play a doubleheader Saturday at 1:00 p.m. and then close out the series on Sunday at Noon. Sunday’s game will be available on ACC Select, while live stats of every Yellow Jacket game this season can be found on Gametracker at www.ramblinwreck.com.