Byrne leads UNCG softball team to a twinbill split with Winthrop
GREENSBORO, NC – Danielle Byrne pitched her first shutout in over two years to give UNC Greensboro a 2-0 win in game two of a non-conference doubleheader with Winthrop at UNCG Softball Stadium on Thursday afternoon. Likewise, the Eagles used a dominant pitching performance of their own in the opening game to earn a 2-0 victory.
Byrne, the senior from Boca Raton, FL, notched her first shutout since the 2004 season when she recorded the only other two blankings of her career. On Thursday, she scattered seven hits and struck out four batters over the distance to improve her record to 4-5 on the year.
UNCG scraped a run together in the first without the benefit of a hit to take an early lead. Krista Judge began the frame by reaching on an error when the Eagle first baseman failed to handle a throw from the pitcher. Judge would then move to second when Adriane Audley drew a walk and later scored on two Julie Harvey wild pitches.
Winthrop put together a threat in the top half of the fifth by stringing together three consecutive singles with two outs, but Byrne preserved the shutout by getting Lisa Kingsmore to pop up to Lyndsay Mouse to end the inning. Byrne began the frame by retiring the first two batters in order, before Jenny Scrymgeour, Stephanie Turney and Tessa Thomas lined singles up the middle to load the bases, but the savvy southpaw got the final out with the pop up to second base.
Kelly Allen provided UNCG with some breathing room with a long homer to left in the sixth for her fifth longball of the season. The senior catcher from Harrisburg, NC stands third all-time in Spartan history with 23 home runs.
The Eagles mounted another comeback attempt in the seventh in similar fashion as the fifth. Byrne set down the first two hitters, before Scrymgeour singled to center and Stephanie Turney reached on an error to bring the winning run to the plate. However, Byrne got Thomas to pop out to Mouse to end the game.
Jennifer Bonilla and Mouse accounted for the other two hits for the Spartans as Harvey (10-12) allowed only one earned run on three hits over 7.0 innings of work, while yielding two walks and striking out six hitters. Scrymgeour went 3-for-3 in the nightcap for Winthrop, while Thomas had a pair of hits.
Winthrop starting pitcher Shahna Ashard (15-7) limited UNCG to only two hits in a complete game 2-0 victory in game one. Ashard picked up five strikeouts and walked none.
Thomas broke a scoreless tie with a two-run home run to left in the third inning to give Winthrop all the runs it would need.
Vanessa Oakes (9-12) pitched well for UNCG but ended up the hard luck loser. She gave up only six hits and stuck out two Eagle batters and did not walk a batter.
Thomas was 1-for-2 with her team-leading seventh homer of the season, while Turney added two singles and a run scored for the Eagles.
Allen and Mouse each picked up a single for the Spartans.
UNCG continues its homestand with a Southern Conference weekend series with Western Carolina. The Spartans and Lady Catamounts will play a doubleheader on Saturday at 1 pm and a single game on Sunday at 1 pm.
Game One 123 456 7 R-H-E
Winthrop 002 000 0 2-6-0
UNCG 000 000 0 0-2-0
Winthrop: Shahna Ashard and Jenny Scrymgeour UNCG: Vanessa
Oakes and Kelly Allen
W: Ashard (15-7). L: Oakes (9-12). SV: None.
Winthrop 000 000 0 0-7-1
UNCG 100 001 x 2-3-1
Winthrop: Julie Harvey and Jenny Scrymgeour UNCG: Danielle
Byrne and Kelly Allen
W: Byrne (4-5). L: Harvey (10-12). SV: None.
- UNCG -