Palmer Sets the Table as Softball Earns Two Fall Ball Wins
ROCK HILL, S.C. – UNCG softball continued its fall ball schedule last weekend at Terry Field, home of the Winthrop Eagles. The Spartans used dominant pitching to defeat the host Eagles, 2-1 before exploding for 11 runs in the second matchup with Wingate, defeating the Bulldogs, 11-5.
In the first game of the day, Jasmine Palmer (Biltmore Lake, N.C./Florida State) got the day started by drawing a walk and moved her way around the bases to get in position for Gabi Cubbage (Felton, Del./Lake Forest). Cubbage connected on a deep fly ball to score Palmer on the sacrifice fly and put UNCG up 1-0 in the top of the first inning.
Palmer got the offense rolling again in the sixth, drawing another walk and coming around to score on an infield single off the bat of Kayleigh Willis (Virginia Beach, Va./Frank W. Cox).
The first game was won in the circle, with Alicia Bazonski (Sheffield, Mass./Mount Everett) tossing 6.0 innings allowing just one hit. Stephanie Bryden (Orlando, Fla./East River) came on in the seventh to earn the save. The junior allowed a hit, but struck out the side to secure the victory in the first game of the day.
Against Wingate, the Spartans jumped out early, scoring four runs in the bottom of the first. Palmer found a way on base, getting hit by a pitch and moving to second after Rachael McClaskey drew a walk. Cubbage moved both into scoring position with a sacrifice bunt before Willis doubled to score two. Marissa Sholtes (Albany, N.Y/South Colonie Central) and Bryden followed with singles to give UNCG an early 4-0 advantage.
Palmer led off the second, this with a single and was followed by a Cubbage single. Willis and Jordan Gontram (Wake Forest, N.C./Heritage) showed some pop with Willis hitting a three-run homer and Gontram going back-to-back with a solo blast of her own.
Makenna Matthijs (Greenville, N.C./D.H.Conley) led off the fifth inning with a single and was brought around on another long ball, this off the bat of Becca Kale (Hudson, N.C./South Caldwell). Consecutive walks brought home Willis in the sixth to give UNCG its 11th run of the contest.
In the circle, Hannah Stiltner (Megan, N.C./Eastern Alamance) got the ball to start. After struggling in the first inning, Stiltner rebounded to pitch in the fifth and sixth innings. Mackenzie Winslow (Mooresville, N.C./Lake Norman) made a relief appearance, throwing 3.0 innings, scattering just three hits before giving way to Stiltner. Kylie Bouplon (Winston-Salem, N.C./Forsyth County) came on in the seventh, facing three batters and earning two strikeouts.
The fall ball schedule continues this Sunday as the Spartans play host to Queens College at 1 p.m. at the UNCG Softball Stadium.