GREENVILLE, S.C. – The College of Charleston softball team completed its series sweep of Furman with a 3-2, eight-inning win at Pepsi Stadium on Sunday afternoon. Rebecca Mueller drove a two-out, two-RBI double to the wall in right to put CofC back on top in the eighth inning, and Hope Klicker preserved the win from the circle to register her sixth complete-game victory of the season.
Similar to Saturday’s game-one win, the Cougars waited until the late innings to spark any run production and rode a scoreless pitcher’s duel into the sixth inning.
CofC (11-7, 3-0 SoCon) briefly seized a 1-0 lead in the sixth, but a Furman solo homer in the bottom half forced an extra frame in which Mueller (Fair Oaks, Calif.) cashed in on the Cougar’s two-out rally with her-run scoring double, pushing the freshman left fielder’s RBI total to 10 on the season.
A Cougar fielding error in the bottom of the eighth extended the inning and allowed Furman to cut into CofC’s lead, but Klicker (Walla Walla, Wash.) would shut down the Paladin bats to solidify the sweep. Klicker pitched all eight innings and struck out five without surrendering a walk.
The Cougars, who reached at least one runner in every inning but the seventh, manufactured the first run of the game in the top of the sixth inning.
Kristy Giragosian (Charlotte, N.C.) sparked the rally with a hard-hit single through the left side of the infield. She moved up to second on a sacrifice-bunt execution by Allison Pedigo (Scottsville, Ky.) and tagged up to third base on a deep fly ball to right off the bat of Lizzy Vaughn (Placerville, Calif.) before scoring easily on a wild pitch with two outs.
Furman retaliated immediately, however, with Ambree Muller’s leadoff homer in the bottom half of the inning. Both teams went down in order in the seventh inning – marking the only inning in which the Cougars would do so – to force the extra frame.
After the Paladins quickly recorded two outs in the top half of the eighth, Pedigo – making her first start of the season – laced a single to right and Vaughn was hit by a pitch to put two runners on base with two outs. The Cougars had lacked timely hitting for the first seven innings to the tune of nine stranded base runners, but Mueller erased that when she drove a long fly ball over the right fielder’s head to score both runners and put CofC on top 3-1.
The Cougars’ eighth-inning error allowed Laruen Collier to cut the lead to 3-2 with an RBI single up the middle, but Klicker would force the final two hitters to ground out to end the game.
Pedigo, Carly Corthell (Reno, Nev.) and Kelsey Hodgson (Woodstock, Ga.) all had two hits on the day for the Cougars. Hodgson had at least one hit in all three games of the series and now has five multiple-hit games on the season.
CofC returns to action when they welcome Mississippi State to Patriots Point for a Thursday afternoon doubleheader. First pitch for the twinbill is slated for 4 p.m.