BOONE, N.C. — Georgia Southern stymied the nation’s top hitting team, Chattanooga, on Friday afternoon in the SoCon Tournament, defeating the Lady Mocs 5-2. UTC was held to just two hits on the day, a season low. A four-run second inning was the difference as GSU advances to Saturday’s Championship Game on Saturday afternoon at 1:30 p.m. on ESPN3.com.
"I’m proud of this team, they have fought back all season and really deserve to be in Championship game tomorrow," said Head Coach Annie Smith. "We gave up a couple runs early, but the offense was great and it got us this big win over Chattanooga."
After a one-out walk in the second, Jessica Traxler took GSU’s starting pitcher Sarah Purvis deep down the left field line for a 2-0 UTC advantage. The runs snapped a run of 36.2 innings of scoreless pitching for the Georgia Southern hurler.
The Eagles answered in identical fashion in the bottom of the second as Mackenzie Williams earned her 44th walk of the year, one short of the Georgia Southern school record, to open the inning. Kaitlyn Johnson did the dirty work, hitting her second home run of the tournament to left, defying a breeze that was blowing in on the Eagle freshman.
A single by Kourtny Thomas to right paved the way for Tabby Douberley to hit a double to the gap in left, allowing Thomas to score from first. Douberley reached third in the inning and scored on a fielding error by Chattanooga’s pitcher, Taylor Deason. The four-run inning gave GSU a 4-2 lead through two complete innings.
A double in the third by Williams with one out opened the door for Andrea Tarashuk to double off the fence in right, plating the Eagles’ fifth run of the game.
Purvis cruised through the final four innings retiring the last 13 batters to take her 23rd win of the season. She struck out three on the afternoon for her third win in the tournament.
The victory sends the Eagles to the tournament’s Championship round which begins on Saturday afternoon at 1:30 p.m. That contest can be seen on ESPN3.com. It is the ninth appearance in the SoCon Championship Round for Southern all-time. The Eagles are looking for their first tournament Championship since 2006.