Sunday’s rubber game moved up to 12:00 p.m. start time
JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (March 1, 2014) – The ETSU softball team split a pair of games with Morehead State Saturday during Day One of the Buccaneer Invitational presented by Holiday Inn.
The Buccaneers (8-6) extended their win streak to five games, the program’s longest such streak since 2009, by beating Morehead State, 3-0, in game one of Saturday’s double-header. However, the Eagles (3-11) responded by knocking off ETSU, 3-1, in the day’s second game.
Getting the start in the opening game of the Buccaneer Invitational, freshman Taylor Carter (Brazil, Ind) continued her strong start to the 2014 campaign, pitching her second consecutive complete-game shutout en route to clinching her sixth win of the season.
The Brazil, Ind., native allowed just three hits in Saturday's win and has allowed just one earned run in her last 31 innings of work, recording 14 strikeouts and allowing no walks during that stretch.
Senior catcher Jackie Baird (Ooltewah, Tenn.) drove home Bethany Cowart on a first-inning single to give ETSU an early 1-0 advantage.
Carter helped her own cause in the fifth inning, singling to center field to plate fellow freshman Kelsey Chernak (Ooltewah, Tenn.) and extend the Bucs’ lead to 2-0.
Chernak went 2-for-3 in the game, marking her third multi-hit game of the season.
Senior Katie Wolff (LaGrange, Texas) sealed the 3-0 win for ETSU by unloading on Tanna Seuferer’s first pitch of the sixth inning, belting a solo home run well over the center field fence.
“Winning the first game was a good way to start the day,” ETSU head coach Brad Irwin said. “Taylor [Carter] threw well and we got a couple runs late that gave us a little bit of insurance. Other than the one error early on, we played good defense and a pretty solid ballgame overall.”
The Bucs’ received another quality pitching performance in the day’s second game; however, ETSU’s offense was unable to follow suit, scoring just once in the 3-1 loss.
ETSU’s lone run of the game came in the second inning on a solo homer by Baird, her eighth of the season.
With the home run, Baird moved past Lindsay Lane into second place on ETSU’s all-time home run list with 21 career homers. Only Stephanie Gaynord (2004-07) has hit more home runs as a Buccaneer, hitting 25 home runs in her career. Baird is also just three home runs shy of matching Gaynord’s single-season home run record of 11.
Wolff allowed no earned runs through the first six innings of play to allow the Bucs to enter the seventh inning knotted in a 1-1 tie.
An impressive barehanded throw to first by third basemen Sam Carpenter (Forest City, N.C.) kept the bases empty for Wolff to start the seventh inning; however, after hitting Stephanie Etter with a pitch, Wolff allowed a two-run, go-ahead home run to Lizzy Margaglitotti.
Latosha Rectenwald (Whitesburg, Tenn.) singled to lead off the bottom of the seventh to keep the Bucs’ hopes alive, but Morehead State went on to record three consecutive outs to clinch the 3-1 victory, snapping ETSU’s five-game win streak.
“After we scored the one run early, it almost seemed like we hung around waiting on another big ball—another home run or something,” Irwin said. “We’ve got to do a better job at not sitting on a lead, and do a better job at manufacturing some runs.”
ETSU will look to get back on track Sunday as it wraps up its series with Morehead State, taking on the Eagles at noon. Follow along with live stats by clicking here. For directions to Betty Basler Field, click here.
“We’ve got to come back tomorrow and win the series,” Irwin said. “This three-game series is similar to the conference format, so it is important that we bounce back tomorrow.”