Softball ends the weekend with a 2-3 record

Mcclain Baxley

The 2017 Georgia Southern softball season began this past weekend as the Eagles hosted the Eagle Round Robin which included Middle Tennessee State University, Tennessee, Tennessee Tech and UNC-Greensboro. The first team the Eagles played was UNCG on Friday afternoon.

Both teams started off strong defensively, and the game was scoreless until the 5th inning when Andrea McKenzie would pick up her first RBI of the season, bringing Shelby Wilson home with a double. In the sixth inning, India Davis and Lydia Witkowski got on base easily before Emily Snider sent them to home plate with a beautiful grounder up the middle to make the game 3-0.

Reigning Sun Belt freshman of the year Dixie Raley had an almost flawless start to her sophomore campaign, allowing just one hit and striking out four Spartans.

The second game of the tournament for Georgia Southern was against the Blue Raiders of Middle Tennessee State. On a cold Friday night, there wasn’t much the Eagles could do to combat the strong swinging of the Blue Raiders.

The top of the third inning was rough for the Eagles as they allowed five runs to make it 7-0. The fourth inning had one of the highlights of the game as Morgan Robinson hit a homerun on the first pitch thrown in the inning. The game ended with a score of 9-2 in favor of MTSU.

Saturday was a new day for the Eagles and one of their biggest tests of the season awaited them in the #15 Tennessee Volunteers. This game from Raley was almost completely opposite from the shutout she pitched Friday. In just over two innings, she allowed six runs (three earned) on five hits with a walk. Tennessee would score nine runs in the third inning alone and the Eagles could only produce one hit all game against pitching ace Matty Moss. The game ended after 5 innings 13-2.

Definitely the most exciting game of the weekend came against the Golden Eagles of Tennessee Tech. Tech started the scoring with 3 runs in the first, but GS responded with two runs of its own from Witkowski and Snider. The game went back and forth all game, but after Tech took the lead in the sixth, Snider walked up to the plate and delivered her second two-run homer of the game. That would be enough and Georgia Southern would win with a final score of 8-7.

The final game of the Round Robin for Georgia Southern on Sunday was a rematch from Friday night against Middle Tennessee. The Blue Raiders went up 4-0 heading into the bottom of the fourth inning. Almost identical to Robinson’s from Friday night, Snider hit her third home run of the season in the fourth to build some momentum. Unfortunately, that would be the only momentum of the game, as MTSU pitcher only allowed one hit and three walks ending the day in 6 innings 11-1.

Georgia Southern is now 2-3 in the season and will head to Baton Rouge, Louisiana this weekend to compete in the Purple & Gold LSU Challenge. The Eagles begin this tournament against number four-ranked LSU Friday night at 7 p.m.