MT. PLEASANT, S.C. – The College of Charleston softball team capped its regular season with a 4-1 victory over Towson at Patriots Point on Sunday, marking the Cougars’ third-consecutive Colonial Athletic Association series sweep and 10th consecutive win overall.
CofC (40-14, 14-4 CAA) amasses 40 wins for the fourth time in program history and first time since the 2005 team appeared in the NCAA Regionals.
The Cougars finish the regular season in second place after newly-found rival James Madison similarly swept its final regular-season series, locking up the No. 1 seed and hosting rights for next week’s CAA Championships. The Dukes and Cougars will be joined by three-and-four seeds Hofstra and Towson at the Veterans Memorial Park on JMU’s campus starting Wednesday, May 7.
The Cougars won in come-from-behind fashion as the Charleston found itself trailing after the fourth inning for the first time on the current 10-game winning streak.
Valerie Cassell and Vaughn provided the heroics with offensive fireworks as part of a four-run, five-hit rally in the sixth which propelled the Cougars to the win.
With one out and a runner aboard Cassell lifted a two-run homerun to left center to give the Cougars a 2-1 lead, and later in the inning, Vaughn added a two-RBI double to stretch it to 4-1.
Junior ace Hope Klicker achieved her second consecutive 20-win season with a win on Sunday in the pitching circle. The lefty hurler now boasts a 9-2 record in CAA play. Freshman Samantha Martin relieved Klicker and earned a save by keeping the Tigers off the board in the seventh.
“Our pitchers were very good as they usually are,” said head coach Linda Kalafatis, “and our defense was solid. I don’t know that we were attacking the ball as well as we could have early on. We had a hunch about Val [Cassell], she’s been swinging it really well in practice the past couple weeks… that was the last spot in the lineup that I wasn’t sure on and I gave it to Val and sure enough she came through with the big hit. Lizzy [Vaughn] had a tough series offensively but came up with a huge hit as she’s known to do and brought in those final two runs which were key.
“It was a tight conference race, and now we’ll travel to JMU where we have another shot at winning a championship. You can expect our best.”
The second-seeded Cougars are set to see third-seeded Hofstra in the opening round at 3 p.m. on Wednesday, May 7.
The 2014 seniors represent one of the most successful and influential group to come through the College system. After their final game at Patriots Point, the Class of 2014 boasts a 151-78 overall record including 37 wins or more in all four seasons and back-to-back trips to the Southern Conference championship game, with remaining milestones left to achieve in the upcoming CAA tournament.
The group will find its names littered through the CofC record books, not limited to Hodgson tying the all-time record for home runs (42), Vaughn setting the all-time record for assists (483), and Corthell setting the all-time record for stolen bases (73).