Big Fourth Inning Lifts UVa Over Dragons, 6-0
BUIES CREEK, N.C. – The Virginia softball team (3-1) used a five-run fourth inning to defeat Drexel 6-0 Saturday in the fourth and final game of Campbell’s Hampton Inn Tournament. Junior outfielder Giannina Cipolloni and sophomore pitcher Melanie Mitchell were named to the all-tournament team.
For the tournament, Cipolloni hit .385 with a double and two RBI. She also had three steals as Virginia was a perfect 14-for-14 on the basepaths. Mitchell was 2-1 in the circle with three complete games and one save. She limited opponents to a .191 batting average and recorded 29 strikeouts on the weekend.
The Cavaliers outhit Drexel 10-3 in its second of two games Saturday. Cipolloni led the way after a 3-for-4 performance at the plate with two stolen bases. Sophomore Taylor Williams singled twice and also contributed two steals. Seven different Virginia players recorded hits in the winning effort.
The game was scoreless until the fourth inning, when UVa batted around for the first time this season. Harris led off with a single to right and stole second. With one out, Byxbee reached on a fielding error. The next batter, Skinkis, doubled to left center to score both runners. Hawkins followed with another double, this time to right center, to score Skinkis. Pittman then laid down a bunt single that moved Hawkins over to third. After Pittman stole second, Cipolloni singled up the middle to score Hawkins. Williams capped the inning with a single to right to score Pittman. In the stanza, the Cavaliers recorded six hits, including five consecutive, to take a 5-0 lead.
Virginia added an insurance run in the sixth. With two outs, Cipolloni beat out a bunt for an infield single and stole second. Williams followed with another bunt single and Bowdren brought home Cipolloni with an infield single to short.
Mitchell tossed all seven innings and tallied eight strikeouts with just one walk. It was her first shutout of the season.
Virginia returns to the state of North Carolina next weekend for competition in East Carolina’s Pirate Classic. The Cavaliers face Kent State at 10 a.m. Friday in the first game of the tournament in Greenville, N.C.