CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – The Virginia softball team (22-18, 8-6 ACC) dropped by games of a doubleheader to No. 13 Duke on Saturday (April 9) at Palmer Park. The Cavaliers fell 8-5 in game one before falling 6-1 in the second game of the day.
GAME 1: No. 13 Duke 8, Virginia 5
Duke jumped out to the quick lead with a three-run second inning before adding a two more runs in the third.
Virginia answered in the home half of the third, taking advantage of a fielding error for Lauren VanAssche to come home after a single to short and the Bailey Winscott scored as the Cavaliers executed a delayed steal of home to make it 5-2.
The Hoos pushed a third run home in the fourth with an RBI double from Gabby Baylog, but the Blue Devils responded with a two-run home run in the fifth. A run in the sixth capped the scoring for Duke, though the Cavaliers would push two more runs home in the bottom of the sixth for the final 8-5 score.
Molly Grube (0-1) took the loss for the Cavaliers, allowing five runs on six hits with a walk and three strikeouts in 2.1 innings of work.
Jala Wright (8-1) picked up the win, allowing five runs – two of them earned – on six hits with two walks and seven strikeouts through 5.2 innings of work. Peyton St. George picked up her third save of the season working the final 1.1 innings.
GAME 2: No. 13 Duke 6, Virginia 1
Duke again scored first in game two of the day, pushing a run home in the first and then three runs – including a two-run home run – in the second.
The Blue Devils added a fifth run in the fourth before Virginia would get on the board with a Donna Friedman single to left that scored Leah Boggs. Duke would score the final run in the sixth for the 6-1 victory.
Aly Rayle (4-4) took the loss for the Cavaliers, allowing four runs on five hits with a walk and a strikeout through 2.0 innings of work.
Peyton St. George (16-2) worked a complete game, allowing one run on five hits with two walks and eight strikeouts.
NOTES ON THE DAY
• Morgan Murphy worked 5.2 innings on the day, making her third and fourth appearances of the season.
• Murphy allowed two runs on four hits in her time in the circle on Saturday.
• Gabby Baylog was 3-for-6 on the afternoon with a run scored and an RBI.
FROM HEAD COACH JOANNA HARDIN
“We made good adjustments as the games went on. We know Duke is a great opponent and they swing it well. Moving forward we need to learn as much as we can. We saw both of their arms and know exactly what we’ll get tomorrow. The key is how early and quickly we can make adjustments at the plate offensively. On the pitching side we need to keep the ball in the park and let our defense work for us. Morgan Murphy came in and did a great job today keeping them at bay. I’m proud of her for doing that because she hasn’t seen a ton of time at this point. That’s hard to do against a great offense. Now we need to turn the page and try to scratch a win out of the weekend.”
UP NEXT FOR THE HOOS
Virginia and Duke conclude the three-game series at noon on Sunday at Palmer Park. It will be Kids Take Over The Park Day and there will activities for kids throughout the game including balloon artists, inflatables and randomly selected kids will get to announce lineups over the PA throughout the game.