April 13, 2012

Softball Sweeps Season Series from Shock

Written by Chris Pendleton

TAKOMA PARK, Md.—The Southern Virginia University softball team completed the season sweep of Washington Adventist University on Friday taking both games of a road doubleheader from the Shock 8-5 (eight innings) and 14-2 (six innings).

Southern Virginia (10-21) previously won both games of its Mar. 22 home doubleheader against Washington Adventist (8-28) when the Knights christened their new softball diamond with two wins.

Southern Virginia appeared to be in complete control of Game One during Thursday's doubleheader as the Knights led 5-1 heading into the bottom of the seventh inning before Washington Adventist rallied to score four runs in their final at bat tying the game at 5-5 and forcing extra innings.

Washington Adventist's late comeback did not rattle the Knights, however, as Southern Virginia scored three runs during its next at bat in the top of the eighth on route to its first extra inning victory of the year.

Freshman Marva Warndahl (Woodland, Wash.) led off the top of the eighth with an RBI single scoring Sarah Edwards (Phoenix, Ariz.) from third, after Edwards began the inning on second base per softball's extra inning protocol and advanced to third on a wild pitch.

Two batters later, pitcher Amanda Otto (Cypress, Texas) drove in two more runs for the Knights on a ground out to third. 

Otto's two RBI not only tied Warndahl for the team lead in Game One, but the senior also picked up the win for Southern Virginia after she relieved starting pitcher Annie Biggs (Gilbert, Ariz.) during the Shock's seventh-inning rally and recorded the final two outs of the inning to pull the Knights out of a jam as the Washington Adventist stranded the game-wiining run on first.

Otto (5-9) then retired three straight in the bottom of the eighth securing her fifth win of the season, which leads all Southern Virginia pitchers.

Four different Knights—Kayla Harmon (Buena Vista, Va.), Britney Jones (Spanish Fork, Utah), Cara Joyner (Colubmia, Miss.) and Warndahl—finished Thursday's opening game with two hits.

Riding the momentum of Game One's extra-inning win, Southern Virginia's offense exploded in Game Two as the Knights finished with season-highs in both hits (14) and runs (14) during the blowout victory.

The Knights' offensive explosion in Game Two was highlighted by a monster game from Kelsey Benson (Providence, Utah), who hit the first Grand Slam of her career in the top of the third inning blowing the game open for Southern Virginia. Benson, who was only a triple shy of completing the cycle, finished 3-for-4 from the plate and a career-high six RBI and three runs.

Senior Dinah Rogers (Huntington Beach, Calif.) also had three hits in Game Two, including her first career homerun—a solo shot to lead off the fifth, which sparked a seven-run inning for the Knights.

McKenzy MacKay (Kaysville, Utah) picked up the win for Southern Virginia in Game Two, allowing two runs and striking out six in five innings of work. MacKay (4-12) also helped her own cause from the plate as the sophomore finished with two doubles and two RBI.

Softball plays its final home doubleheader of the season on Monday, Apr. 16 when the Knights host the University of Virginia's College at Wise starting at 3 p.m. EST.

Southern Virginia will honor its four seniors—Joyner, Mallory King (Tivoli, N.Y.), Otto and Rogers—before Monday's opening game.