BUIES CREEK, N.C. (March 27, 2007) - The number three was an important figure for the ETSU softball team Tuesday night at Eakes Complex, as they used a three-run fifth to propel them over Campbell in game one, 7-4, and the Bucs scored three first-inning runs in the nightcap to come away with the 4-2 victory.
ETSU has posted back-to-back series sweeps, matching its longest winning of the season at four. With the sweep, the Bucs improved to 15-15, 3-1 in the Atlantic Sun, marking the first time since Feb. 17 they have been at the .500 plateau.
The Bucs scored first in game one when Marissa Hardy's (
However, Campbell took a 2-1 lead in the bottom half of the inning after receiving four consecutive hits, but sophomore hurler Mary Catherine Vercoe (Signal Mountain, Tenn.) did an excellent job to get out of the second without allowing any more runs. With no outs and runners on second and third, Ashley Jones tried to score on a grounder to third, but was called out at home.
Both teams pushed a run across the plate in the third, but the Bucs offense remained on fire by scoring three in the fifth and two more in the six to open the game up. Gaynord kicked things off in the fifth with an infield single, and quickly scored on Katy Jett's (
The Lady Camels would cut the lead to 5-4 in the bottom of the fifth, but Vercoe left the tying run at third when she forced Karlie Love to tap one back to the mound.
The Bucs added two insurance runs in the sixth as they took advantage of a couple walks from Brittany Stanley. Hardy led off the sixth with a walk and eventually scored on Jett's second double of the game. Gaynord also drew a walk and would come across to score on a Jessie Hackworth (
Vercoe cruised through the final two innings as she retired six of the final seven
In game two, the Bucs bats came to life early, by pushing three runs across the board in the first inning. ETSU began the game with three straight hits as Gaynord kicked things off with a leadoff triple. She quickly scored when Jett singled up the middle, and Hackworth joined in on the hit parade with a single to left. Jett and Hackworth each moved up a base on a wild pitch by
Freshman Darci Gilbert (
The lethal duo of Gaynord and Jett continued to give Campbell's pitching a headache as Gaynord singled in the fifth and scored when Jett smacked her third double of the night, giving ETSU a 4-1 lead.
Gilbert was then faced with a huge test in the sixth as she allowed four straight hits to start the inning. With nobody out and the bases loaded and one run already in, Gilbert forced Jessica Huffman to hit into an infield fly, and got out of the jam by getting pinch hitter Cassie Webb to line into a double play.
After allowing a leadoff single in the seventh, Hardy came in to relieve Gilbert, and she got the job done for her first collegiate save. Hardy walked the first batter she faced, but got the next three Lady Camel hitters out to end the game.
Gilbert earned her second straight win by working 6.0 innings and allowing two runs on 10 hits. Freshman (Katy) Jett had an outstanding pair of games as she went 5-for-8 (.625) with three doubles, four RBI and three runs scored.
ETSU will have a very quick turnaround as they host Appalachian State tomorrow at