Eagles show heart over weekend

Randall Hampton

Georgia Southern University’s softball team scrapped its way to a 3-2 record against some serious competition this past weekend.

The Eagles pushed their record on the season to 6-3 with hard-fought victories and a couple of tough losses.

The weekend started on a historic note as junior pitcher Sarah Purvis pitched the first perfect game in GSU history in a 1-0 win.  Purvis faced the minimum 21 batters as she dominated Southern Illinois University with 11 strikeouts.

The team rode that momentum to a 4-3 win over Wichita State University in extra innings.  GSU overcame a three-run deficit in the seventh inning to force the game into a decisive eighth inning.

Freshman catcher A.J. Hamilton drove home the game-winning run on a sacrifice fly.  The Eagles were flying high on two consecutive wins going into the rematch with SIU.

Unfortunately for GSU, the perfect game left SIU with a taste for revenge and the team put up 10 runs on the Eagles.  GSU got blown off the field and could only score one run in the 10-1 loss.

The softball team found itself in a dog fight the very same day with one of the best teams in the country.  The University of Alabama is ranked No. 2 in the ESPN/USA Softball Collegiate Top 25.

GSU responded well to the underdog role as Sarah Purvis followed up her perfect game with a one-run gem.  UA pushed GSU to its second extra inning game in two days and Purvis grinded her way through eight of the nine innings as the team fell 2-1.

Purvis went head to head with the Most Outstanding Player of the 2012 Women’s College World Series, Jackie Traina. Traina pitched all nine innings and gave up just five hits, while Purvis gave up seven hits.

The Eagles found themselves on the verge of a three-game losing streak going into Sunday’s game against Florida Gulf Coast University, and for five innings the streak seemed unavoidable.

GSU’s bats were able to come alive in the top of the sixth inning with RBI singles from junior shortstop Kourtny Thomas and sophomore second baseman Lexi Allen.

Senior first baseman Tabby Douberley would come through in the clutch with the game on the line in the top of the seventh inning.

She singled with the bases loaded to close the weekend out on a high note for the Eagles.

GSU is not done with the Sunshine State as the team will compete in the Citrus Classic this coming weekend.