CSU Softball Earns Sweep of Fort Valley State on Friday
Columbus, Ga. -- Columbus State collected 22 hits in a double header sweep of Fort Valley State on Friday, but still found runs at a premium, earning 4-2 and 5-4 wins in the two games. The Cougars are now 16-19-1 on the season.
CSU left 10 runners on base in the opener and nine more in the nightcap and never really built a comfortable lead in either game. Pitching was outstanding in the first game as Kelsey Gilliam and Kristi Bullard held FVSU to just one hit through six innings. Bullard earned the win. In the second game, Kori Waugh lasted just a third of an inning before giving way to Courtney Darr. Darr pitched though the sixth inning, allowing just three hits and one run. Gilliam pitched the seventh and earned a save.
In game one, CSU got on the board in the first inning thanks to a two-out, run-scoring single from Rocky Hemmer. CSU carried that 1-0 lead into the fourth when an RBI single by Gilliam and a sacrifice fly from Christie Thompson made it 3-0. The Cougars got a solo homer from Brittany Leverett to make it 4-0. The homer was Leverett's 12th of the year.
The Wildcats made it interesting against reliever Jennifer Isasi in the seventh. An error on a possible double play ball by Isasi led to the first run and a double later in the inning by Wateria Hall scored another run to make it 4-2. The tying runs were aboard for FVSU with one out, but Oveyana Gordon's liner to right was turned into a double play as Keeley Kennedy caught it and fired to second to nab the runner to complete a game-ending double play.
Kenneday led CSU at the plate in the game with three hits, while teammates Thompson, Waugh, and Branigan Wix added two hits apiece.
Fort Valley jumped out to a 3-0 lead in game two as Waugh had control problems and walked three hitters and plunked another for the first run. Anjah Usher then delivered a two-run single for three-run lead. Darr entered at that point and promptly fanned the next two hitters to end the threat and strand two runners.
CSU scored a run in the first inning on a bunt single by Carrie Jones, and tied the game in the second with two more runs. Kennedy stole home for the first run and then Melanie Trevathan poked an RBI single to second base to score another and make it 3-3.
The Cougars pulled ahead in the third as Morgan DaCosta stroked a two-out single up the middle to score Lauren Reader. An insurance run came in the fourth as Trevathan singled, moved up on a wild pitch and came home on a Thompson double.
The Wildcats pulled to within 5-4 on Jessica Buchanan's solo homer in the sixth, and put the tying run in scoring position as Brittney Brown led off the inning with a double off reliever Gilliam. She would move to third on a groundout and was left there as Gilliam induced a groundout off the bat of Jushari Kellman to end the game.
Trevathan and Thompson led the CSU offense with two hits each in the game.
CSU hosts USC Aiken in a Peach Belt Conference twinbill on Saturday at the CSU Softball Field. Game time is set for 2 p.m.