Mitchell Breaks All-Time Wins Record as Virginia Sweeps George Mason, 8-0 and 15-3
April 3, 2013
FAIRFAX, Va.—Virginia softball senior Melanie Mitchell set the program record for all-time wins as the Cavaliers swept George Mason, 8-0 (five innings) and 15-3 (five innings), Wednesday (April 3) in Fairfax, Va. With the wins, the Cavaliers improved to 16-16 on the season, while the Patriots fell to 9-23.
In the first game, Mitchell (White Plains, Md.) pitched her 23rd career shutout for her 75th win in four years on Grounds, breaking a tie with Lisa Palmer (1986-89) for the most in UVa history. Last Saturday (March 30), Mitchell became the first UVa and seventh pitcher in Atlantic Coast Conference history to record 1,000 career strikeouts. She also holds the school record in complete games (105), appearances (147), innings pitched (855.0) and starts (131).
“Only six others have reached 1,000 strikeouts in the ACC and I’m honored to be a part of that elite class,” Mitchell said. “And to be able to break the all-time wins record at UVa is a big deal to me and the team. I’ve gotten a lot of opportunities to pitch here over four years and I’ve been fortunate to be in the circle for 75 wins.”
Mitchell allowed four hits and struck out four in five innings of work to improve to 12-9 on the season.
The Cavaliers loaded the bases to start the game with two walks and a hit-by-pitch. Up stepped sophomore Megan Harris (Knoxville, Tenn.), who singled to score senior Taylor Williams (Woodbridge, Va.) and sophomore Heidi Velk (Murietta, Calif.) to give UVa a 2-0 lead.
Junior Karli Johnson (Lovettsville, Va.) followed with a sacrifice fly to score classmate Marcy Bowdren (Fairfax Station, Va.). After Virginia loaded the bases again, senior Lauren Didlake (Bowling Green, Va.) walked to score Harris for a 4-0 Cavalier lead.
In the third, Johnson doubled and scored on another double by senior Alex Skinkis (La Palma, Calif.). Later in the inning, senior Kristen Hawkins (Elizabeth, Pa.) walked with two outs, stole second and scored on double by Didlake. Freshman Shannon McGinley (Prairie Valley, Kan.) followed with a single up the middle to bring Didlake home, giving the Cavaliers a 7-0 lead.
UVa scored its eighth run of the game in the fourth, when Harris singled to score Velk.
Casey Herring (3-6) took the loss for George Mason, allowing four runs while only getting one out. Stephanie Maher gave up four runs in 4.2 innings of relief.
In the second game, the Cavaliers took advantage of seven Patriot errors on the way to a 15-3 win. Didlake hit the second home run of her career, a solo shot to right center, while Bowdren, Hawkins and Skinkis each had two RBI. Five Cavaliers had multiple hits, including Velk, who had three.
Freshman pitcher Aimee Chapdelaine (Pembroke Pines, Fla.) pitched a complete game with three unearned runs and three strikeouts for the win (4-6)
GMU’s Sarah Kleinfelter allowed 13 runs (six earned) in 2.1 innings to take the loss (1-3), while Christina Gabriele gave up two runs in 2.2 innings of relief.
Up next, UVa travels to Chapel Hill, N.C., April 6-7 for a three-game series at North Carolina. Saturday’s doubleheader and Sunday’s single game are slated for a 1 p.m. start. All three games will be broadcast live on ESPN3.