RALEIGH, N.C. – Sophomore Hayley Busby (Phoenix, Ariz.) launched a pair of home runs and freshman Aly Rayle (Herndon, Va.) spun another gem in the circle to help Virginia (19-30, 7-16 ACC) clinch the series against NC State (26-25, 6-14 ACC) with an 8-5 win on Saturday (April 27).
Rayle (8-12) earned her second-consecutive win to open the series. She worked seven innings, allowing four runs on six hits while striking out six.
Busby produced her second multi-homer game in as many weeks, lifting a solo shot in the third and a three-run blast in the sixth. She extended her hitting streak to 10 games and recorded multiple hits for the third consecutive game.
The Cavaliers quelled NC State momentum in the sixth with a four-run top half after the Wolpack pulled within a single run. Singles from Kate Covington (McLean, Va.) and Arizona Ritchie (Stafford, Va.) put a pair on for Busby to uncork her second homer of the day. Erika Osherow (Darien, Conn.) made it 8-3 Cavaliers with an RBI-double to cap the inning.
NC State took advantage of a move to the bullpen in the bottom half, using a pair of singles and error to load the bases and score a run. Rayle re-entered the circle and promptly shut down the threat, inducing a double play for a pair of outs as Busby stepped on third and fired home to keep a run from crossing. Another ground ball to third ended the Wolfpack threat with Virginia’s lead intact at 8-4.
• Lacy Smith (Lancaster, Pa.) singled in the first and scored on a passed ball to stake Virginia to a 1-0 lead.
• Busby lifted a solo shot to lead off the third inning, extending the Cavalier lead to 2-0.
• Ashlee Davis (Gilbert, Ariz.) drove home a run with an RBI-single in the fourth and Arizona Ritchie (Stafford, Va.) made it 4-0 with a sacrifice fly.
• NC State broke through with a solo homer to lead off the bottom of the fourth from April Visser.
• Logan Morris pulled NC State within a single run with a two-run homer in the fifth.
• Four hits, highlighted by Busby’s three-run homer, scored four runs in the sixth to rebuild an 8-3 lead for Virginia.
• NC State used a pair of singles to load the bases and score a run off reliever Allyson Frei (Branchville, N.J.) in the sixth, cutting the deficit to 8-4.
• Skylar Johnston lifted a lead-off solo shot in the seventh for NC State to make it 8-5.
ON THE LINES
• Busby’s 10-game hitting streak marks a career high for the sophomore.
• Smith went 2-for-4 at the plate with a run scored.
• Davis matched a career high with her ninth RBI of the season.
• Rayle notched five or more strikeouts for the third-straight game.
Virginia will go for the series sweep on Sunday (April 28) in a noon first pitch from Dail Stadium.