Cavaliers Rebound to Beat Southern Utah 3-1
<?xml:namespace prefix=”st1″ ns=”urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:smarttags”?>LAS VEGAS The Virginia softball team (4-2) rebounded to win the second game of the Louisville Slugger Desert Classic with a 3-1 victory over Southern Utah Thursday in Las Vegas. Senior Carly Winger notched a two-RBI single while classmate Karla Wilburn improved to 3-0 in the circle.
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Wilburn recorded her third consecutive complete game, allowing no earned runs and just four hits in seven innings of work. (The lone Southern Utah run came after a Virginia error). Wilburn struck out four and did not walk a single batter.
The Cavaliers also recorded four hits singles by Alison Pittman, Winger, Sarah Tacke and Nicole Koren. Winger’s single scored two while Giannina Cipolloni picked up the other RBI after a bases-loaded walk.
Virginia took a 3-0 lead in the fifth. With one out, an Abby Snyder walk and a Koren single through the left side to put runners on first and second. Junior Megan Wind then came on to pinch run for Snyder. With two outs, Pittman laid down a beautiful bunt down the third base line and beat out the throw to load the bases. Cipolloni then finished a tough at-bat with another walk to bring in the first run of the game.
With the bases still loaded, Winger ripped a single to left to bring home Koren and Pittman.
Southern Utah fought back in the top of the sixth. With one out, Jenavieve Purcell reached on a UVa fielding error. A groundout to second gave the Cavaliers two outs but Purcell, running on the pitch, advanced to second. The next batter, Darlene Fernandez, doubled to right center to score Purcell and cut the lead to 3-1. Trish Clapham followed with a single to left but Pittman made a nice throw to home plate and Fernandez was held up at third. Natalie McBurney would fly out to end the threat.
After a 1-2-3 Virginia seventh, Southern Utah was again knocking on the door. A Caroline Fernandez double to center led off the inning and Fernandez was then replaced with pinch runner Norian James at second. Shannon Lum grounded out to second and James would move on to third. Aly Daniels grounded out to third and UVa first baseman Sarah Tacke threw out James trying to score to end the game.
Kristina Brooks (1-5) took the loss in the circle for Southern Utah. She finished with eight strikeouts and three walks.
Virginia continues tournament play Friday with two games. The Cavaliers will face Saint Louis at 11:15 a.m. Pacific Time and South DakotaState at 1:30 p.m.