February 24, 20171234567RHE
Eastern Kentucky0200000242
ETSU020200X470
PitchingIPHRERBBSO
Win: Madison Ogle (2-3) 7.042228
Loss: PAULICK (0-2) 4.122236
BattingABRHRBIBBHR
MINOGUE (EKU) 302000
Danielle Knoetze (ETSU) 312201
February 24, 201712345678RHE
ETSU00300003673
Winthrop10000202581
PitchingIPHRERBBSO
Win: Sharlene Godoy (2-0) 2.012111
Loss: MAJETTE (3-3) 1.023200
BattingABRHRBIBBHR
Taylor Carter (ETSU) 413201
LOWERS (WINTHROP) 302210
TEMPLETON (WINTHROP) 302000
Bucs use long ball to sweep past EKU and Winthrop
Senior Danielle Knoetze homered in back-to-back games on Friday.
Bucs use long ball to sweep past EKU and Winthrop
Friday, February 24, 2017

Knoetze homers in back-to-back games; Carter blasts game-winner over Winthrop

ROCK HILL, S.C. (Feb. 23, 2017) – It was just a matter of time when ETSU would break out its bats and use the long ball to carry the Blue and Gold to victory. 

After hitting two home runs in their first 10 games of the season, the Bucs hit three in two games on Friday en route to lifting the Blue and Gold to a sweep on day one of the Winthrop/Adidas Tournament in Rock Hill, S.C. Danielle Knoetze (San Diego, Calif.) connected on a two-run home run to break a tie game in the fourth inning, while Madison Ogle (Maryville, Tenn.) registered a career-high eight strikeouts as ETSU downed Eastern Kentucky, 4-2, while Knoetze and Taylor Carter (Brazil, Ind.) both homered in the Bucs’ 6-5 eight-inning win over Winthrop in game two from Terry Field. 

Knoetze and Carter both went 3-for-7 at the plate on Friday to help ETSU snap its five-game skid and improve to 6-6 on the season. Carter's home run was the 25th of her career, which ties her with Stephanie Gaynord for second all-time, while Knoetze moved her career total to 19, which ranks sixth all-time. The win over Eastern Kentucky was also a milestone victory for head coach Brad Irwin as it marked his 100th win at ETSU. Knoetze – who homered in back-to-back games for the third time in her collegiate career – drove in five of the Bucs’ 10 runs on Friday, while Carter and Tiffany Laughren (Erwin, Tenn.) drove in two runs apiece. 

The Buccaneer pitchers combined for a 1.87 ERA (4 ER/15.0 IP) and struck out 15 hitters. Ogle earned the win in game one, while senior Sharlene Godoy (La Puente, Calif.) recorded the final six outs to secure the win over Winthrop. 

EASTERN KENTUCKY RECAP

Danielle Knoetze broke a tie game by belting a two-run home run in the bottom of the fourth, while Madison Ogle struck out a career-high eight hitters as ETSU defeated Eastern Kentucky, 4-2. 

Knoetze led the Buccaneer offense with a two-hit game, while freshman Nikki Grupp (Jacksonville, Fla.) reached base three times (two walks and a hit by pitch) en route to scoring a pair of runs. Tiffany Laughren drove in the tying run with an infield single in the second inning. 

Ogle went the distance to earn the win (2-3) as she allowed two runs on four hits with the eight strikeouts in seven innings. The right-handed hurler’s previous strikeout mark was five – set against Furman on April 17, 2015. 

With the win, ETSU defeated Eastern Kentucky for the first time in program history as the Bucs dropped the previous 11 meetings against the Colonels. 

After Taylor Carter just missed on a grand slam in the bottom of the first, EKU took a 2-0 lead in the second inning when Johnkyria Alson connected on a two-run home run to center. 

From there, Ogle zoned in and held the Colonels scoreless for the final five innings, while limiting them to three hits and striking out six during that stretch. 

The Bucs plated a pair of unearned runs to pull even at two in the bottom of the second. With one out and the bases loaded, Mykeah Johnson (Cohutta, Ga.) looked to have hit into an inning-ending double play, but a throwing error by EKU’s catcher allowed Johnson to reach first and also gave Kelsey Chernak (Ooltewah, Tenn.) the opportunity to score from second. From there, Laughren’s RBI single back to the circle scored Grupp – who earlier reached on a fielding error – to tie the game at two. 

With Ogle holding the Colonels’ offense in check, ETSU took its lead when Knoetze hit a two-out, two-run home run down the left field line, putting the Blue and Gold ahead, 4-2, in the bottom of the fourth.

Ogle kept the two-run lead stand as she retired nine of the final 11 hitters she faced to earn the win. 

Mollie Paulick suffered the loss (0-2) for Eastern Kentucky as she came out of the bullpen and allowed two runs on two hits in 4.1 innings of work. Rachel Minogue recorded two of EKU’s four hits and Alston reached base twice – home run and walk. 

WINTHROP RECAP

Danielle Knoetze blasted a three-run home run in the top of the third, while Taylor Carter provided the game-winning home run in the eighth as ETSU defeated Winthrop, 6-5. 

Carter tied a career high with a three-hit game, while Kelsey Chernak reached base in all three at-bats – two walks and a single. 

The Bucs used three pitchers to pick up the win as Lindsey Fadnek (Coalfield, Tenn.) got the start and allowed one run on three hits in three innings, while Rebecca Wahrmund (Morrilton, Ark.) issued the two unearned runs with four strikeouts in three innings. Godoy recorded the final six outs to pick up her second win of the campaign (2-0).

The Eagles jumped out to a 1-0 lead on Morgan Lowers’ two-out RBI bloop single to right-center in the first inning, but the Bucs used the long ball to go ahead 3-1 in the third. Following a pair of one-out walks to Kelsey Chernak and Nikki Grupp, Knoetze flexed her muscles yet again as she blasted a three-run, two-out homer over the fence in left-center. 

The game remained 3-1 until the bottom of the sixth when Winthrop capitalized on a pair of Buccaneer fielding miscues to tie the game at three. With one out and the bases loaded, A.G. Gardner hit a grounder to third, which allowed Kelsey Smith (Tucson, Ariz.) to get the force out at the plate. However, catcher Kylie Toler (Bradenton, Fla.) tried to turn the double play but her throw to first sailed into right field, allowing Leah Young to score from second on the play. Following that miscue, ETSU right fielder Emma Martindale (Johnson City, Tenn.) had an errant throw trying to get the ball back into the infield, which gave Ansley Gilreath the opportunity to score the tying run. Wahrmund kept it a tie game by picking up her fourth strikeout of the game when she got Blake Wallert out swinging on a 2-2 pitch. 

After both teams left a runner in scoring position in the seventh, the Bucs struck for their three runs in the top of the eighth to take a 6-3 lead. With Mykeah Johnson being placed on second to start the frame, Tiffany Laughren ripped a one-out RBI double to the gap in left-center, while she trotted home on Carter’s blast to right-center. 

Winthrop didn’t go down without a fight as the Eagles got an RBI single by Lowers and a sac-fly RBI from Gilreath to pull within a run. However, with the tying run at third and one out, Godoy struck out Kiley Majette swinging and induced Wallert into a game-ending pop out to first to secure the win. 

Majette was tagged with the loss (3-3) as she surrendered three runs (two earned) on two hits in one inning of work. Starter Keleigh Romine allowed three runs on two hits in 2.2 innings before turning the ball over to Madyson Watson. Watson held the Bucs scoreless on three hits over 4.1 innings out of the bullpen. 

Lowers and Madson Templeton led the Eagles with two hits each, while Lowers also drove in two runs. 

Winthrop had its five-game win streak snapped as the Eagles dipped to 6-5. 

The Bucs are back in action on Saturday morning as ETSU takes on Youngstown State at 11 a.m. and Bucknell at 1 p.m. Both games will be played on Field C at the Winthrop Softball Complex. 

For more information on Buccaneer softball, visit ETSUBucs.com and click on the softball page.