ROCK HILL, S.C. – Boston University (9-1) used a two-run seventh inning to down Virginia (5-4), 2-0, in the final game of the Winthrop Softball Tournament on Sunday (Feb. 16) morning.
Riley Wilkinson (Fairfax Station, Va.) made just the third start in her career, throwing six scoreless frames for the Cavaliers. She scattered five hits, all singles, while striking out four. Aly Rayle (Herndon, Va.) was charged with the loss after allowing the two Terrier runs on two hits in the seventh.
Boston ace Ali DuBois (6-1) earned her fourth shutout of the season. The two-time NFCA All-Region selection struck out six Cavaliers while allowing just three hits on the day.
With the game scoreless in the top of the seventh, a bloop single from Jen Horita sparked the Terriers. Caitlin Coker pushed her across the plate with a double to left center. Coker then scored on a ground ball to second, beating the throw to the plate.
HOW IT HAPPENED
Both starting pitchers used early escapes to provide momentum in the circle. Wilkinson saw the first two Terriers of the game reach safely but kept Boston off the board by cutting down a runner at the plate. In Virginia’s half of the first, a pair of Boston errors put runners at second and third with two outs but DuBois settled the threat with a strikeout.
Only one other Virginia runner would reach scoring position, coming on a two-out double in the sixth by Donna Friedman (Orange, Calif.).
Wilkinson escaped another jam in the second inning, leaving Terriers stranded at second and third with a strikeout. Boston would threaten again in the fifth, putting two in scoring position with one out but Wilkinson shut the inning down with a strikeout and fly ball.
The Terriers finally broke through in the seventh off of the reliever Rayle to provide the only runs of the day.
ON THE LINES
• Wilkinson’s six scoreless innings marked a career high for the graduate student.
• Friedman had two of Virginia’s three hits, finishing 2-for-3 in the game.
• Savana Avilla (Phoenix, Ariz.) added Virginia’s other hit, a single up the middle in the third.
FROM THE TOP STEP
“Riley came out and this is only the third start in her career,” coach Joanna Hardin said. “I’m super proud. She was gritty and she worked through it the first inning, struggling a little bit to find the zone and command it. She got out of some tough jams, tough situations and then once she hit her stride there was no stopping her.
“I made a tough call when they flipped the lineup for the fourth time to make a pitching change. She didn’t do anything wrong. She had a great day so really, really proud of her. She was just locked in, and I’m really excited for her and for how that helps our bullpen moving forward.”
Virginia returns to action in the Wings Etc. Classic, hosted by USC Upstate, on February 21-23.