Lady Cougars Open Season with 9-0 Victory over West Alabama
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Columbus – The Columbus State University softball team scored in every inning as the Lady Cougars opened the 2012 campaign with an impressive 9-0 win versus West Alabama in the opening game of the Hughston Sports Clinic Classic held in Columbus, GA.
Morgan Knight and Nina Rubio began the bottom half of the first inning with back-to-back walks for CSU. After a strikeout and fielder's choice, Morgan Staffins ripped a single through the left side to bring across Rubio.
An inning later, the Lady Cougars erupted for four runs thanks in part to a bases clearing single by Rubio. Kori Waugh struck out to start off the frame but the pitch got away from the catcher allowing her to reach first base. A pair of walks to Branigan Wix and Kristen Gregory loaded the bases before West Alabama registered another strikeout for the first out of the inning. Rubio then came up to the plate and fought off a two-strike pitch to rightfield driving in Waugh and Wix. The throw from the rightfielder got away from the catcher and a hustling Gregory scored all the way from first. Casey Googe then ripped a single to left-centerfield plating the final run of the inning giving CSU a 5-0 advantage.
Columbus State added a run in the third as Taylor Turner singled up the middle bringing around Staffins for the sixth run of the game.
The table-setters at the top of the lineup again got it going in the fourth inning as Knight singled to leftfield followed by Rubio reaching on a fielding error. Googe got her second RBI single of the contest bringing in Knight while Rubio advanced to third. A wild pitch allowed Rubio to score and Googe moved up to second on the play. Following a strikeout, Staffins capped off the scoring in the game with a RBI single to left-centerfield.
One of Coach Huskisson's prized recruits this season, Mollie Russell lived up to the hype tossing five shutout innings. The right-hander allowed just two hits while registering seven strikeouts to pick up the win. Offensively, Googe and Staffins both picked up a pair of hits and RBIs while crossing the plate one time apiece. Rubio went 1-for-2 scoring three times and knocking in two runs as well.
Brooklyn Phillips had both of West Alabama's hits going 2-for-2. Jessica Brock suffered the loss in her collegiate debut surrendering five runs (four earned) in just two innings of action. She issued four walks and allowed three hits. Hannah Griffin tossed 1.2 innings giving up four runs (three earned) on four hits and a walk.
Columbus State plays the second game of the Hughston Sports Clinic Classic versus No. 9 Lenoir-Rhyne.