March 26, 2014
ATHENS, Ga. - The No. 13/14 Georgia softball team defeated in-state rival Georgia Southern 4-1 in non-conference action on Wednesday, March 26 at Jack Turner Stadium in Athens, Ga. With the win, the Bulldogs improve to 29-3 on the year, while Georgia Southern falls to 21-11 overall.
Geri Ann Glasco got the start for the Bulldogs and got the win to improve to 13-1 on the year. She allowed one run on eight hits and two walks, while striking out five in six innings of work. The Bulldogs turned to Chelsea Wilkinson in the top of the seventh inning with the tying run on deck. She struck out the first two batters she faced before getting the final batter to ground out to earn her second save of the year. Sarah Purvis suffered the loss for Georgia Southern to drop to 11-5 overall. She allowed four runs on eight hits and a walk in five innings in the circle. Brooke Red threw the final inning for the Eagles and did not give up a run.
After a scoreless first inning, the Bulldogs were able to take a 2-0 lead in the bottom of the second on back-to-back home runs by Puailoa and Beggs. With one out, Puailoa belted a home run into the pines beyond the right field wall before Beggs followed with a home run of her own that made it a 2-0 game.
The Eagles looked to answer in the top of the third after a single, a fielder's choice and an infield single put a pair of runners aboard with one out. The pair moved into scoring position on a groundout, but a stellar play at second by Alex Hugo ended the inning with two runners stranded in scoring position.
The Bulldogs added two runs in the bottom of the fifth inning to extend their lead to 4-0. Malia Rivers led off the inning with a pinch hit double down the left field line for her first extra-base hit as a Bulldog. With a runner at second, Niaja Griffin sacrificed Rivers to third. One batter later, Samantha LaZear singled up the middle, allowing Rivers to plate Georgia's third run of the game. With two outs, Paige Wilson doubled down the right field line and into the corner, allowing LaZear to cross the plate easily and give Georgia a 4-0 lead.
The Eagles got a run back in the top of the sixth inning on a solo home run by Kourtny Thomas that made it a 4-1 game. After a single, Glasco retired the final three batters in order, leaving a runner stranded at third.
With a runner at first and no outs in the top of the seventh, the Bulldogs went to the bullpen for Wilkinson who promptly struck out the first two batters she faced before getting the final batter to ground out to Hugo at second to end the inning, preserving Georgia's 4-1 win.
Georgia returns to Southeastern Conference play this weekend, March 28-30, when it travels to Columbia, Mo., to face the No. 16/19 Missouri Tigers. Friday's game is set to start at 7:30 p.m. ET