GREENSBORO, N.C. – UNC Greensboro softball (27-19, 9-4) took a doubleheader 7-1 and 7-4 against Mercer (22-26, 7-6) Saturday afternoon at Sikes Field. The Spartans used the long ball for the day’s success with three home runs in each game.
A pair of home runs followed in the next inning. Katie Stettler hit the first pitch she saw to dead center for a leadoff homer, her fourth of the year. Melanie Darges singled up the middle, and Marisa Sholtes homered to centerfield with two outs.
UNCG added a run in the sixth inning. Howard drew a leadoff walk. Pinch runner Monica Pepe stole second base and scored with two outs on a double by Stettler to right center.
The Spartans’ final run came in the last inning. The bases were loaded after walks by Delaney Cumbie and Howard and a hit-by-pitch by Sholtes. Samantha Lagrama was then plunked on the arm to allow Cumbie to jog home for the run.
UNCG scored three runs in the sixth inning for the comeback win in game two. After Mercer scored two runs on a pair of RBI-doubles to centerfield in the fourth inning, a pair of homers in the sixth inning gave UNCG the lead. Matthijs led off with a walk, and Sholtes got her team-high 13th homer of the year to right center. With one out, Howard hit a home run just past the left field fence for her eighth of the season.
The Bears had runners on first and second base with no outs in the bottom of the inning. With Bryden coming in relief, catcher Delaney Cumbie caught a pop up for the first out. Howard ended the scoring opportunity when she fielded a grounder, touched third base and threw over to first base for the double play.
The Spartans added four insurance runs in the last inning. Kamryn Graves led off with a homer to left field, her third of the season. Two runners were in scoring position after Pepe walked and went to third base as Cumbie singled to centerfield and advanced on the throw to second base. Pepe then scored on a sac fly to left field by Matthijs. Following a double to centerfield by Sholtes, Bryden knocked in Cumbie with an RBI-single to left field and went to second base on the throw. Howard walked on four-straight balls to load the bases, and the last run came on an RBI-fielder’s choice to the shortstop by Stettler.
UNCG looks for the sweep of Mercer Sunday at 1 p.m.
News and Notes
- Bryden (19-10) threw her 17th complete game, allowing one run, three hits and no walks with seven strikeouts.
With @StephBryden_03 striking out the side in the 2nd inning, she recorded her 5️⃣0️⃣0️⃣th career strikeout 🔥🔥! She's just the 3rd Spartan to reach the historic milestone #letsgoG pic.twitter.com/QTgUv7IeHk— UNCG Softball (@UNCGSoftball) April 27, 2019
- Bryden tied Amber Watson (2000-03) for the fifth-most career wins in program history at 48 and for the ninth-most wins in a single-season in school history with volunteer coach Alicia Bazonski (2016, 2017), Winn Hazelgrove (1992, 1993) and Raeanne Hanks (2013).
- Kylie Bouplon (7-7) picked up the win in the second game in six innings of work, giving up four runs, nine hits and one walk with five strikeouts.
- Sholtes broke a tie with Danielle Vega (2013-16) for the sixth-most career RBIs in program history with 122.
- Sholtes tied for the sixth-most homers by a Spartan in a single-season with Penny Thompson (2002), Lindsay Thomas (2014), Nicole Thomas (2014) and teammate Jordan Gontram (2018).
- Five Spartans had multiple hits on the day.
- UNCG had a 10-1 advantage in walks.
- Howard went 3-4 with two homers, four walks, three RBI’s and two runs.
- Batting in only the second game, Graves finished 2-3 with a homer and double.
- Sholtes was 3-7 with two homers, four RBI’s, three runs, a double and a hit-by-pitch.
-- UNCG –