MT. PLEASANT, S.C. – The College of Charleston softball team remained unblemished in Southern Conference play with a doubleheader sweep of Elon at Patriots Point on Saturday afternoon. The Cougars used 22 hits and three home runs to get past the Phoenix by 7-3 and 4-3 outcomes.
Kristy Giragosian (Charlotte, N.C.) hit her second career grand slam to give CofC (13-9, 5-0 SoCon) a comfortable lead in game one. Her first grand slam also came against Elon in last year’s series.
The Cougars had to battle from behind in game two and freshman Rebecca Mueller (Fair Oaks, Calif.) provided the heroics with a walk-off RBI single in the seventh inning.
Hope Klicker (Walla Walla, Wash.) and Stephanie Saylors (Easley, S.C.) both threw complete games and earned the victories in the circle. Klicker struck out eight hitters and only allowed one earned run in the first game and Saylors didn’t surrender any earned runs in her outing.
Every single batter in the lineup got at least one hit in the first game, and nine of ten hitters had at least one hit in the second game.
The Cougars were clad in pink jerseys to raise money and awareness for breast cancer. The team auctioned off the game-worn jerseys with all the proceeds going to cancer research.
The teams will finish the series with a single game on Sunday at Patriots Point. First pitch is scheduled for 1 p.m.
College of Charleston: 7, Elon: 3
The Cougars jumped ahead early with Hodgson’s two-run home run to centerfield in the first, and Klicker stayed perfect through three innings, with exception to a Cougar fielding error.
The Phoenix cut the lead in half with an RBI double by Johanna Spencer in the fourth, but a dazzling line-drive catch by Hodgson and an awareness play by Vaughn to erase Elon’s lead runner preserved the Cougar lead.
The Cougars put their first three hitters aboard without getting the ball out of the infield to start the fifth inning, and Chandler Frisbie (Lawrenceville, Ga.) lined one back at the pitcher for an RBI single. After an infield fly and strikeout, the Phoenix looked to get out of the inning without any further damaged, but Giragosian erased the hopes of that when she hammered a 2-2 offering out of the park in left.
The Phoenix tacked on two runs on four hits in the sixth to cut the led to 7-3, but Klicker iced them the rest of the way to preserve the victory.
College of Charleston: 4, Elon: 3
In game two, the Phoenix seized the early lead after Cougar fielding errors extended the second and third innings. The Phoenix cashed in on both frames, and an RBI double for Carleigh Nester and RBI single for Johanna Spencer made it 3-0 in the top of the third inning.
The momentum shifted in the bottom half of the inning when Vaughn put life back into the Cougar dugout with her solo homerun to left center. Hodgson batted next and slapped a single to right field, and Chandler Frisbie (Lawrenceville, Ga.) doubled to left center to plate a run.
With runners on first and second, Mueller reached on a fielder’s choice which left runners on the corners. Mueller broke towards second base and craftily got herself caught in a rundown and staved off being tagged long enough to allow Frisbie to cross the plate and tie the game.
The teams remained deadlocked at 3-3 until the seventh inning, when two Elon errors put runners on the corners with no outs for the Cougars. With the infield drawn in, Mueller slapped a single through the right side of the infield and Chloe Fletcher (Land O’Lakes, Fla.) crossed the plate in the form of the walkoff winning run.