Softball remains undefeated in day two of Kickoff Classic
By Jordyn Matez
The FGCU softball team won both of its games on Saturday in the annual Kickoff Classic. The first game was a 7-0 sweep over LIU-Brooklyn and the second a 4-0 win over Ball State.
Five of FGCU’s seven runs came in the very first inning, when the Blackbirds made an error on a routine throw to first to turn Reedy Davenport’s single into a double. Racquel Fournet then slammed a line drive down center field for a double to bring Davenport home.
Following two walks in a row from Brooke Clemens and Marcella Parrado, Mikenzie Vaughn saw an RBI double that brought both Clemens and Fournet home to give the Eagles a 3-0 lead.
Finally, yet another double from the Eagles, this time by Morgan Greco, brought Vaughn and and Parrado home for their final two runs of the inning.
Not much action was to be seen by either side, much to the disappointment of LIU-Brooklyn who was at a five-run deficit. Three Blackbirds would see base hits in the next three innings, but their offensive effort wasn’t enough to put them on the scoreboard.
The Eagles, however, brought the pressure offensively in the bottom of the fourth inning to secure a win. Following base hits from both Farley Callaghan and Mckenna Batterton, Sammi Poehlman achieved a triple to send her two teammates home.
This gave the Eagles a 7-0 lead that the Blackbirds would not be able to climb back from, despite a valiant effort in the top of the fifth from Alyssa Martinez and Patricia Griffin.
The second game was also a shutout by FGCU, this time against the Ball State Cardinals.
Both teams began with a valiant effort offensively, though neither team was able to put a run on the scoreboard.
The first run of the game came in the bottom of the third, when Vaughn and Fournet saw back-to-back base hits. The Cardinals failed to follow through on a routine play that allowed Fournet to turn her single into a double.
With two girls on base, a sacrifice grounder from Clemens was all Vaughn needed to run home. Immediately after, Davenport sent a line drive into left field to bring Fournet home. This brought the score to 2-0 Eagles.
Though the third inning saw no action from either side, the Eagles picked it up again in the bottom of the fourth. Following a walk from Kyleigh Taylor, Kate Kelly pumped out a grounder to bring pinch-runner Ahnie Jumper home in the place of Taylor.
Yet another error was seen from the Cardinals as they failed to field a grounder from Fournet, bringing Kelly home for FGCU’s fourth and final run of the night.
Defense was all the Eagles needed to secure a win, and they allowed nothing more than two hits throughout the remaining three innings to come out on top.
“Great job by all 4 of our pitchers to keep their hitters at bay,” said FGCU softball head coach David Deiros. “We played flawless defense including some really special plays. Our offense is finding a bunch of different ways to score. We have put ourselves in a great position to win the Kickoff Classic and that’s a great feeling on Saturday night.”
The Eagles will conclude their annual Kickoff Classic on Sunday morning with a game against LIU-Brooklyn at 11:15 a.m. and a second against Ball State at 1:30 p.m.