ELON, N.C. – The Elon University softball program closed out its second and final home tournament of the season with a pair of dominating performances with wins over Coppin State and Presbyterian to give the Phoenix a 4-0 weekend at the Elon Phoenix Tournament.
Elon (12-5-1) defeated Coppin State, 7-1, in its first game of the day before defeating Presbyterian, 9-4, in the nightcap at Hunt Softball Park. Kayla Caruso (1-0) earned the win versus the Lady Eagles in her first start of the season while Chelsea White (6-3) picked up the win against the Blue Hose.
Elon 7, Coppin State 1
The Phoenix tallied 13 hits against the Lady Eagles with seven players recording at least one. Elon plated four runs in the bottom of the opening frame starting with Carleigh Nester’s double to left field that scored Alaina Hall, who reached earlier on a single. Nester later scored on a miscue by Coppin State before Emily Roper hit a two-run home run to center field, scoring Emily Cameron who had reached on a free pass, to put Elon up 4-0 after the first inning.
Roper added her third RBI of the game in the bottom of the second inning on a single through the left side to score Hall again. Hall had reached earlier on a one-out single to the pitcher.
Both teams went scoreless in the third before Elon added two more runs to the scoreboard in the bottom of the fourth. Roper added her fourth RBI on a sacrifice fly to score Hall again. Nester also crossed home plate after another error on Coppin State giving the Phoenix the 7-0 advantage.
The runs would be more than enough for Caruso, who was making her first start in nearly a year. The sophomore scattered four hits in her 5.0 innings of work, striking out and walking two.
Coppin State scored its lone run of the game in the top of the sixth, but could not manufacture any more offense as the Phoenix earned the 7-1 victory.
Elon 9, Presbyterian 4
The Phoenix again started the game off strong in the opening frame with three runs scored versus the Blue Hose. Nester had a one-out solo home run to left field to put Elon on the board first, 1-0. After Roper hit a two-out double to left field, Grace Eng drove her home on a two-run homer to left field to put the Phoenix up 3-0.
Eng added her second two-run home run of the contest in the bottom of the third, scoring Cameron who had reached earlier in the inning on single. The blast gave the Phoenix a 5-0 lead and some cushion for White in the circle.
Presbyterian answered with two runs in the top of the fourth to trim its deficit to 5-2, but the momentum shifted back toward the Phoenix in the bottom half of the inning. Lauren Oldham led off with her first career home run down the right field line to put Elon up by four, 6-2. Roper added three more runs to the scoreboard on a three-run shot to right center, making the score 9-2.
The Blue Hose refused to go away and responded with two more runs in the top of the fifth, making the score 9-4, but neither team added any runs to the board after the top of the fifth and setting the final score.
White pitched her second consecutive complete game while allowing eight hits and four runs.
The Phoenix and the Blue Hose face each other again in a rematch on Wednesday, March 5, again at Hunt Softball Park. The first pitch is scheduled for 5 p.m.