Feb. 9, 2018
LAKE CHARLES, La. – Virginia Softball split a pair of games on day two of the Cowgirl Classic as the Cavaliers topped Houston Baptist 3-1 before falling 9-5 to No. 20 Tulsa on Friday (Feb. 9).
Freshman Madi Traver (Coppell, Texas) launched a pair of home runs, one in each game, to help Virginia (1-3) split. Her two home runs are also her first two career hits at UVA.
Along with Traver, Allison Davis (Oak Hill, Va.) went deep against HBU. Her two-run shot in the fourth inning provided the difference in the Cavaliers’ victory.
GAME ONE | VIRGINIA 3 – HBU 1
Virginia claimed its first victory of the year by riding the long ball against Houston Baptist. A pair of home runs, one each from Traver and Allison Davis, provided all the offense the Hoos needed for the 3-1 win.
Traver’s solo shot, the first of her UVA career, came in the third to stake the Cavaliers to a 1-0 lead. The freshman took a Stephanie Buenrostros offering and lined it over the left field wall. It was the Cavaliers’ first hit of the day.
After Houston Baptist leveled the game in the top of the fourth, it was Allison Davis who provided the difference for the Hoos. With Olivia Gott (Weston, Fla.) on first following a one-out walk, the senior left fielder delivered a no-doubter to left, putting Virginia ahead for good.
Allison Davis would finish the game 2-for-3, adding a double in the sixth inning. Outside of Traver and Davis, Gott was the lone Cavalier with a hit in the game.
In the circle, Lacy Smith (Lancaster, Pa.) picked up her first victory of the season with 5 2/3 innings of strong work. The right-hander held HBU to a single run on two hits while striking out a pair of Huskies.
The outing was Smith’s longest since going 5 2/3 against Syracuse on April 10, 2016.
When Smith (1-1) ran into trouble in the sixth, Erika Osherow (Darien, Conn.) came on in relief, working the final 1 1/3 innings to earn her third career save and first of 2018.
GAME TWO | No. 20 TULSA 9 – VIRGINIA 5
Virginia out-hit 20th-ranked Tulsa 10-7, but 14 walks hampered the Cavaliers’ upset bid. Gott, Smith and Ashlee Davis (Gilbert, Ariz.) all went 2-for-3 to lead the Hoos. Smith finished with a pair of RBI while Gott and Traver each added another.
The Golden Hurricane struck right out of the gate as a leadoff walk set the table. A shallow fly to center bounced just out of reach of a diving Kate Covington (McLean, Va.) to score the first run of the game. Tulsa went on to load the bases before Osherow settled in to get a pair of pop-ups to end the inning.
Facing Second Team NFCA All-American and American Athletic Conference Pitcher of the Year, Emily Watson, the Hoos threatened to answer immediately in the first. Allison Davis drove a 1-2 offering to left field, but a leaping grab at the wall robbed her of extra bases. Gott and Danni Ingraham (Laguna Niguel, Calif.) followed with back-to-back singles to put two aboard, but Watson squelched the danger.
The Cavaliers missed another scoring opportunity in the second as a pair of walks and a single from Ashlee Davis loaded the bases. Watson again had the answer, getting a strikeout in a 3-2 count to keep Virginia off the board.
As rain started to fall, Tulsa broke the game open in the third inning as the Golden Hurricane scored three quick runs to chase Osherow (0-2) from the game. Tabby Dabney (Forest, Va.) relieved Osherow and limited the damage to just one additional run. All four runs were charged to Osherow.
Virginia got on the board in the fourth as Traver tagged her second solo shot of the day. The freshman jumped a Watson offering, driving it down the left field line and into the Tulsa bullpen. The Hoos went on to score three more in the frame on three additional hits.
Covington and Allison Davis sparked the big inning with singles before a bases-loaded walk by Gott drove in a run. It appeared the inning would end on Smith’s RBI-single as Allison Davis was cut down trying to score from second, but after a lengthy argument, it was ruled her path to the plate was obstructed. With the call, the Hoos cut the deficit down to 5-4.
Tulsa answered back with a run in its half of the fifth but the Hoos matched it in their half. Ashlee Davis scampered home on a wild pitch to pull UVA within 6-5.
The Hoos became just the third team in the last two seasons to score five runs against Watson. The others being No. 10 Arizona and defending national champion Oklahoma.
In the sixth, free bases caught up with the Hoos as four walks gave Tulsa a pair of insurance runs and an 8-5 advantage. A walk and an error in the seventh would make it 9-5 Tulsa.
The 14 free passes are the most issued in program history and the Golden Hurricane turned those into five runs. Osherow took the loss after allowing five runs, four earned, in two innings. Dabney worked three innings, allowing three earned runs and Smith worked two innings with just a lone unearned run on her line.
Watson earned the win for Tulsa by going the distance. She surrendered five earned runs on 10 Virginia hits.
Virginia concludes the Cowgirl Classic on Saturday with an 11 a.m. (ET) matchup with Southern.