ELON, N.C. – The Elon University softball team earned a split of its doubleheader matchup versus Virginia on Sunday afternoon, Feb. 19, at Hunt Softball Park. The Phoenix defeated the Cavaliers in the opening game, 6-4, but could not hang on to a late lead in game two, falling by a score of 7-5 to conclude the twin bill.
Elon (6-2) was handed its first loss of the season at home in the second game by the Cavaliers (5-6), but also earned its third win all-time versus Virginia as the series record moved to 10-4 in favor of UVA. The contest was also the first of seven games on the Phoenix’s 2017 schedule versus opponents against the ACC including four at home.
Alaina Hall had a big day at the plate in the two games going 4-for-6 with three runs scored, three RBI, a double and a triple. Carey Million ended her great weekend by batting .500 in the two games (3-for-6) with a pair of RBI. As a team, Elon batted .302 overall versus Virginia.
Hailey Jomp (1-1) took the win and the loss in both games for the Phoenix in the circle, both coming in relief. Kiandra Mitchum and Kenna Quinn started games one and two, respectively, as the Phoenix pitching staff had a 5.00 ERA between the two contests.
Game One: Elon 6, Virginia 4
The Rundown: Elon opened the scoring of the first game with a three-run bottom of the second. Million led off with a single and advanced to second after Callie Horn drew a one-out walk. With two outs in the frame, Hall doubled to right field, scoring both Million and Horn to put the Phoenix up 2-0. Hall herself would cross home plate on a Kristin Hoover RBI single to give Elon a 3-0 advantage.
Virginia added a run to the scoreboard in the top of the third before taking the lead in the top of fifth. Katie Park tied the game at three-all on a one-out, two-run home run, scoring Allison Davis who reached earlier on a single. A two-out RBI triple from Iyana Hughes put the Cavs up front, 4-3, before a lineout to second closed the frame.
The Phoenix tied the game in the home half of the fifth. Million drove in Kara Shutt on a two-out RBI single to center field to knot the game at 4-4. Shutt had reached earlier on a one-out walk and advanced all the way to third on a fly out and a wild pitch.
Elon regained the lead for good in the bottom of the sixth. Erica Serafini doubled to right center with one out and moved to third on a bunt single by Hall. Both runners reached scoring position on Hall’s stolen base before Hoover put the Phoenix back in front on a RBI single. On the following at bat, Hall scored on a RBI fielder’s choice by Hannah Olson, put the maroon and gold up 6-4.
The Cavaliers would get a runner on in the top of the seventh, but Jomp would leave them stranded as a strikeout ended the contest to secure the 6-4 win.
At the Plate: The Phoenix had eight hits in the contest with Hall, Hoover and Million having multi-hit performances…Hall and Hoover also had a pair of RBI while Serafini and Hall also adding a double to their stat lines…Elon had six runners left on base.
In the Circle: Jomp earned her first career win after coming in relief of the starter Mitchum in the sixth…The Elizabeth City, N.C., native went 1.1 innings and allowed one hit with a walk and a strikeout…Mitchum pitched 5.2 innings and gave up 10 hits and four runs, all earned, with three fanned batters and a walk.
Game Two: Virginia 7, Elon 5
The Rundown: Both teams scored a run in the first inning. A Phoenix throwing error with two outs led to Virginia plating the first run in the top half of the opening frame as Hughes scored to put the Cavs ahead 1-0.
Elon tied the game at one-all on Million’s two-out sacrifice fly to left. The run scored Olson, who had reached earlier in the inning on a walk. With a runner at third, Elon tried to continue its momentum, but a strikeout closed the inning.
The Phoenix went in front with a two-run bottom of the second. Horn opened the inning with a single to left center and moved over to second off a sacrifice bunt by Serafini. Hall then tripled to right center, scoring Horn before plating another run off a throwing error to put the Phoenix up 3-1.
Virginia tied the game at three-all after a couple of solo home runs in the third and fifth innings. Elon jumped back in front with a two-run bottom of the fifth, behind a two RBI single from Ashtyn Foddrell. Foddrell drove in Shutt and Million to put the Phoenix up 5-3 going to the sixth.
The Cavaliers trimmed the Phoenix’s lead again with another solo home run in the sixth as Elon held on to a 5-4 advantage going to the seventh inning. After the Phoenix induced the first two outs of the inning, Virginia tied it with its fourth solo homer of the day at 5-5. Following a two-out single by Park, the Cavs took the lead on its fifth home run of the day, a two-run blast by Olivia Gott, that put Elon in a 7-5 hole.
In the home half of the seventh, Elon was able to load the bases with two outs after Hall drew a walk and the top of the lineup coming up. The comeback was short lived as a fly out to left field ended the threat and game.
At the Plate: Virginia outhit the Phoenix 13-8 with five of those being home runs…Hall and Horn both had two hits for the Phoenix while Foddrell had two RBI…Elon left 11 base runners stranded.
In the Circle: Jomp took the loss in the second game after pitching 1.2 innings in relief of starter Quinn…Quinn gave up seven hits, three runs, two earned, with a strikeout…Mitchum pitched a third of an inning in the top of the seventh.
Elon is hosting Campbell on Tuesday, Feb. 21, in an early-week matchup. That game is scheduled for a 4:30 p.m. start.