Delaware Uses Strong Pitching, Timely Hitting To Sweep Doubleheader From UNC Wilmington, 2-1 and 3-2
April 22, 2011
Photos Courtesy of Mark Campbell
• Game 1 Boxscore
• Game 2 Boxscore
• Photo Gallery
NEWARK, Del. –Michelle McKinnon singled home Jenny Richards in the bottom of the seventh during the opener while Michelle Grap drilled a three-run triple in the nightcap as the University of Delaware softball team swept a doubleheader from UNC Wilmington, 2-1 and 3-2, Friday afternoon.
The Blue Hens, who improved to 16-29 overall and 6-8 in the Colonial Athletic Association following the pair of victories, struck first during the opener by pushing across an unearned run in the bottom of the fourth inning. With one out Gina Knutson hit a pop up in front of the plate that was dropped by Seahawks catcher Ashley Shingleton, and after Knutson stole second, she went to third on a groundout by Rachel Jones. Grap then drilled a single to centerfield, driving home Knutson with the first run of the game.
However UNC Wilmington, which dropped to 11-38 overall and 3-11 in league play, quickly answered with a run in the fifth to tie the contest. With two outs Candice Faircloth worked a base on balls, and she came all the way around to score when Shingleton followed by lacing a triple to rightcenter.
The game remained knotted at 1-1 until the bottom of the seventh, when Richards lined a two-out double into the gap in leftcenter. McKinnon then hit a groundball up the middle which struck second base, careening into leftcenter to allow Richards to easily score the winning run (at right).
Blue Hen relief pitcher Amanda Stacevicz picked up the win and improved to 9-8 after allowing one run on one hit in 3.2 frames, while starter Hannah Rust gave up four hits in 3.1 scoreless innings. Amanda Aditays went the distance for the Seahawks, falling to 5-13 after allowing two runs, one earned, on six hits.
Richards finished 2 for 3 with a run scored for the Blue Hens while McKinnon, Knutson, Jones and Grap added a hit apiece.
The nightcap remained scoreless until the top of the fourth inning, when Shingleton hit an infield pop up that could not be corralled by McKinnon and scored on a two-out double to rightcenter by Daniela Torres.
But the Blue Hens immediately countered, as singles by McKinnon and Knutson along with a walk to Jones loaded the bases with two out. Grap (at left) then hit a line drive over the head of Seahawks centerfielder Nicole Tuttle, chasing home all three runners to put Delaware in front, 3-1.
UNC Wilmington pulled within one in the fifth as Faircloth reached second on a dropped flyball by McKinnon, went to third on a sacrifice bunt by Tuttle, and scored on a two-out single up the middle by Brittany Pierce.
However Blue Hen reliever Anne Marie Pagano would buckle down from there, not allowing a hit the rest of the way to earn her first save of the season. The Seahawks had a runner at first in the sixth inning but Torres was gunned down at second by Knutson attempting to steal, before Pagano retired the side in order during the seventh to complete the twinbill sweep.
Kathleen Conway started in the circle for the Blue Hens and improved to 3-8 after allowing just an unearned run on three hits in the opening four innings, while Pagano was also charged with only an unearned run on one hit during the final three frames. Amanda Davenport, who gave up three earned runs on six hits in 3.2 innings of work, fell to 4-10 for the Seahawks.
Grap went 2 for 3 with a triple and the three RBI for Delaware, while Richards was 2 for 2 with a walk.
The Blue Hens will look to complete the series sweep on Saturday when UD hosts UNC Wilmington in a single game beginning at 12 noon.Back To Softball Home Softball Story Archive