ELON, N.C. – After rain postponed the completion of the Elon softball team’s second game against College of Charleston yesterday, the teams completed the series today, May 6, in the last ever games at East Field on Senior Day. The Cougars (31-21, 14-9 SoCon) took both games over the Phoenix (22-25, 9-15 SoCon) by scores of 3-2 and 7-6.
The teams resumed the second game of the series in the top of the fifth with the game tied at two-all and Erin O’Shea replacing Chelsea White in the circle for the Phoenix.
In the sixth, the Cougars scored the winning run off a single to left by Carly Corthell that scored Lizzy Vaughn from second. Vaughn had hit a one-out infield single to reach and moved to second on a single to left by Hope Klicker.
Klicker (14-8) took the win for the Cougars after pitching all seven innings and giving up two runs off four hits and striking out eight. The loss went to E. O’Shea (14-13), who gave up the winning run, as well as three hits in three innings of work.
Four different Phoenix combined for Elon’s four hits, while Tomeka Watson accounted for one RBI.
The Phoenix got on the board early in the series finale with one run in the bottom of the first. Watson hit a two-out single to third to reach, stole second and the moved to third on an illegal pitch by CofC’s Jen Rosene. A single to left by E. O’Shea pushed Watson across the plate and put the maroon and gold up 1-0.
Charleston took a three-run lead the next inning off a grand slam by Kristy Giragosian. After Mackenzie Maples hit a double to right and Amanda Lonergan drew a walk, Klicker was hit by a pitch with two outs to load the bases. Giragosian hit the homer to left field to score the four runs and give the Cougars the 4-1 advantage.
Down 6-1 in the bottom of the fourth, Elon pulled within two to make it a 6-4 game. Morgan Wright led the bottom of the frame off by taking the first offering from Rosene to right center for her second home run of the season. With one out, Danielle Lafferty singled to right and then moved to second after Kaitlyn Piazzolla was hit by a pitch. Both runners advanced on a passed ball and then scored on a single to center by Ali Ford.
After a scoreless fifth, the Cougars added a run in the sixth to go up by three, 7-4, off a single up the middle by Klicker. The run scored Vaughn who singled down the left field line to start the inning.
Carleigh Nester kept hope alive for the maroon and gold in the bottom of the seventh by hitting a leadoff double to left. A sacrifice bunt by Camille Hill moved Nester to third before Watson hit a homer down the left field line to bring the Phoenix within one. However, Elon was not able to put another run on the board and fell by a final of 7-6.
The win went to Rosene (2-0) after going four innings and allowing three earned runs off six hits. Klicker, who gave up two runs in three innings, picked up her first save of the season. E. O’Shea (14-14) took the loss with five runs off four hits in 2.1 innings.
Watson went 3-for-4 at the plate with two runs and two RBI, including her sixth home run of the year, while Ford also recorded two RBI off her one hit of the game.
Elon will find out its seed in the Southern Conference softball tournament later today. The tournament starts Wednesday, May 9, in Boone, N.C.