Gamecocks Down Georgia 6-2 for Series-Opening Win|
April 12, 2013
COLUMBIA, S.C. - Behind a complete-game performance from redshirt sophomore pitcher Julie Sarratt, South Carolina (22-17, 2-11 SEC) defeated Georgia (29-14, 6-7 SEC) 6-2 in front of 877 fans at Carolina Softball Stadium at Beckham Field on Friday night.
Sarratt (5-4) went 2-for-3 at the plate with a double and a run scored, while she also tossed a complete game in the win. She scattered 10 hits and two walks while fanning four, giving up two earned runs. She pitched her way out of trouble a number of times, forcing the Bulldogs to strand 12 runners in the contest.
The Gamecocks got on the board in the second thanks to a Georgia error. Sarratt led off the inning with a double, and her pinch runner, junior Codee Yeske, scored when the throw from center got away from the Bulldog defense on junior Chelsea Hawkins' single. Hawkins moved to third on the errant throw and scored on junior Ashlyn Masters' fielder's choice, sliding in and jarring the ball loose on the tag attempt.
South Carolina made it 4-0 in the third. Freshman left fielder Alaynie Page led off the frame with a single, and junior second baseman Dana Hathorn got hit by a pitch for the 15th time this year, giving the Gamecocks two base runners. A fielder's choice forced out Hathorn at second and put runners at the corners with one down. Another grounder moved junior centerfielder Kristen Struett into scoring position, setting up Hawkins' two-RBI single to center that made it 4-0.
The Bulldogs cut the lead to 4-1 on Tess Sito's leadoff homer in the fourth, but the Gamecocks tacked on two more runs in the fifth when senior shortstop Samie Garcia stroked a two-out, two-RBI single, scoring Sarratt and Masters. Sarratt singled to start the frame, and Masters followed with a one-out double.
Georgia made it 6-2 with back-to-back, two-out doubles by Anna Swafford and Paige Wilson in the sixth. That sixth and the third, when Sarratt had two of her strikeouts in a 1-2-3 frame, were the only innings the Bulldogs left less than two on base.
Hathorn reached base in all four plate appearances, going 2-for-2 and getting hit by a pitch twice. Hawkins went 2-for-3 with two RBI and a run scored for the Gamecocks. Masters had a double, an RBI and a run scored, while Garcia posted two RBI.
Geri Ann Glasco (17-5) took the loss, giving up six earned runs on 10 hits and three walks while striking out three. Christine Olney and Niaja Griffin both had two hits for the Bulldogs.
It's South Carolina's first win over Georgia since 2007, and it also stands as the first win in SEC play at Carolina Softball Stadium at Beckham Field.
The two teams square off again on Saturday, with first pitch set for 4 p.m. EDT.