ELON, N.C. – Behind a pair of home runs from rookie Grace Kiser, the Elon University softball team opened its 2021 campaign with a 17-1 run-rule victory over Rhode Island on Sunday, Feb. 14, at Hunt Softball Park.
Playing in its first softball game in 340 days, the Phoenix (1-0) posted its highest scoring output on opening day since a 15-0 victory over Winthrop in 2016. It was also the third straight win Elon has had over the Rams (0-1).
“We have been waiting for a long time to play this game,” said Elon head coach Kathy Bocock. “The girls were ready, and they all stepped up together as a team. We were able to showcase our depth to get players some much needed time on the field because that is going to matter throughout this season.”
At the Plate
• The Phoenix outhit the Rams at the plate, 8-5.
• Three Elon players – Kiser (2-of-4), Rebecca Murray (2-of-4) and Claudia Penny (2-of-2) ended the day with multi-hit efforts. Penny also had a pair of doubles.
• Kiser drove in six RBI to lead Elon while sophomore Megan Grant had four. Grant also legged out a triple in the contest.
• Elon drew 12 walks in the contest.
In the Circle
• Kenna Quinn (1-0) went the distance in the circle to earn the win for the Phoenix.
• The Boiling Springs, S.C., native allowed five hits and one run while striking out four. She also did not walk a batter.
• The Phoenix took a 4-0 lead after the bottom of the first. In her first collegiate at bat, Kiser took a two-out, 3-2 pitch to left center, scoring three runs on the round tripper. A Penny double scored another run to put Elon ahead after one.
• Elon put up a six count in its home half of the second frame. Penny was the main catalyst with another double, this time on a hit to right center, to score a pair with one out.
• After Rhode Island came back with a run to break its shutout in the top of the third, Elon responded with two runs of its own in the bottom to extend the score to 12-1 after three.
• A five-run bottom of the fourth closed out the scoring for the maroon and gold. After Elon had a pair reach to start the frame, Kiser hit her second three-run home run of the game on the first pitch she saw to put the Phoenix up 15-1. Grant rounded out the scoring on a two-RBI triple to right to extend Elon’s lead and set the final score.
• Elon’s 17 runs were the most in a single-game since scoring 13 versus Longwood last season.
• Kiser became the first Elon player to hit two home runs in a single-game since Ally Repko did so last season versus Morgan State and the first freshman to do it since Megan White versus Drexel in 2019
• Kiser also scored four runs in the game while Murray crossed the dish three times.
Elon hosts North Carolina A&T on Wednesday, Feb. 12, at Hunt Softball Park. That contest is scheduled for a 4 p.m. start.