Virginia Downs George Washington in Home Opener
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. The Virginia softball team improved to 11-5 on the season with two wins over George Washington (2-6) Saturday in the team’s home opener at the newly renovated Park. The Cavaliers took the first game, 10-0, in five innings, and won the second contest in six innings, 9-1. Redshirt junior Sarah Tacke contributed five RBI in each game and hit two home runs on the day.
Senior Karla Wilburn matched her win total from a year ago, picking up victory No. 9 in the circle in game one. The Del Mar, Calif., native tossed a four-hitter and finished with eight strikeouts and zero walks.
Tacke and Nicole Koren each had two hits at the plate to lead the Cavaliers against George Washington. Tacke hit her fourth home run of the year while Koren belted her sixth over the fence.
Virginia put up five runs in the first inning. Pittman reached base after a GW error and scored on a Cipolloni fielder’s choice, beating the throw to home plate after the shortstop bobbled the ball. After Cipollini stole second, Winger recorded an infield single to put two runners on. Tacke then tripled down the right field line to score Cipolloni and Winger. After back-to-back strikeouts, Koren hammered the ball over the center field fence for two RBI and a 5-0 Virginia advantage.
The Cavaliers added two more in the bottom of the third, highlighted by Tacke’s two-run shot to left. In the fourth, Pittman and Cipolloni recorded back-to-back singles and Winger walked to load the bases. Tacke’s groundout to the right side scored Pittman and a Clara Kendall single up the middle scored Cipolloni and Winger.
In the second game, freshman Stephanie Coates earned the win. She threw six innings, allowing just four hits while also striking out eight.
Tacke had another big game at the plate, hitting her fifth home run of the year while also belting another triple. Carly Winger also recorded her second long ball of the season and Pittman had two hits in game two.
George Washington got its lone run of the afternoon in the first with two singles in the inning. Virginia came back to score two in the bottom of the stanza.
With two outs, Winger reached by error and took second. Tacke then homered to left as the Cavaliers took a 2-1 lead. Winger’s solo shot to left in the third put Virginia up 3-1.
The Cavaliers added five in the fifth and one in the sixth. After a Pittman single and back-to-back walks by Cipolloni and Winger, Tacke tripled to right center to clear the bases. After a Kendall walk, Abby Snyder brought in Tacke with a sacrifice fly to center. A Koren single up the middle brought in Kendall.
Pittman singled to left to lead off the sixth. After stealing second and then third, Cipolloni tripled to left to bring in Pittman and end the game.
Virginia and George Washington conclude the three-game series at 1 p.m. Sunday at The Park.