March 17, 2013
AUBURN, Ala. – Freshman Tina Iosefa tied the Georgia freshman home run record with her ninth round-tripper of the season as the No. 25 University of Georgia softball team earned a come-from-behind 9-8 win over the Auburn Tigers on Sunday, March 17 at Moore Field in Auburn, Ala. With the win, the Bulldogs get the sweep of the Tigers, extend its winning streak to 11 games and move to 21-7 on the year and 3-0 in Southeastern Conference action. Auburn drops to 20-10 on the year and 1-5 in league action. Iosefa tied Kristyn Sandberg’s freshman home run record that was set in 2009 and tied last year by Paige Wilson.
Geri Ann Glasco earned the win in relief to improve to 12-1 on the season. She allowed four runs on five hits and three walks while picking up six strikeouts in six innings in the circle. Morgan Montemayor got the start for the Bulldogs and allowed four runs, only one of which was earned, on four hits. Montemayor re-enterted in the seventh before giving up an earned run that prompted Georgia to go back to Glasco, who recorded the final three outs with the tying run at first. Marcy Harper, who came on in relief in the top of the seventh, suffered the loss to fall to 10-4 on the season. She allowed five runs on seven hits in 3.2 innings of work. Lexi Davis got the start for Auburn and threw 3.1 innings for the Tigers, giving up four runs on five hits. Davis gave up two runs in the first before getting pulled, but later re-entered in the fifth and threw the remainder of the game.
Trailing 3-2 for much of the game, the Bulldogs put up five runs with two outs in the top of the fifth to take a 7-3 lead. Samantha LaZear and Anna Swafford led off with a pair of singles and advanced on a sacrifice bunt by Wilson. With one away, Glasco tied the game at three on a sacrifice fly that scored LaZear from third. Iosefa followed with a two-run home run over the left field wall that gave the Bulldogs a 5-3 lead. Kaylee Puailoa then took the first pitch she saw over the center field wall for the second-straight home run that made it a 6-3 game. Tess Sito then hit the third-consecutive home run with a line drive over the right field wall that exntended Georgia's lead to 7-3. The trio of home runs marked the second time this season that the Bulldogs have gone deep in three-straight at bats.
Auburn got three runs back in the bottom of the fifth that made it a one-run game at 7-6. Emily Carosone led off with a single through the left side and moved to third on a double by Caitlin Schultze. Brooke Lathan drove in Carosone with a RBI-single to center that cut the lead to 7-4. With one away, a fielding error by Wilson at short allowed Baylee Stephens to reach and Schultze to come home for Auburn's fifth run of the game. With runners at first and third, a wild pitch scored Lathan and made it a 7-6 game. After Jade Rhodes hit into a fielder's choice that got Stephens out at home on a throw from Glasco that prevented a run, Katie Browne connected with Sito at second to double off Rhodes for the final out of the inning that allowed the Bulldogs to hold on to the 7-6 lead.
The Bulldogs answered with two runs in the sixth to extend its lead to 9-6. Swafford reached on a one-out single, stole second and scored on a RBI-single off the bat of Wilson. With a runner in scoring position after Wilson stole second, Glasco delivered a RBI-single to right that sent home Wilson for Georgia’s ninth run of the game. Auburn made it a 9-7 game on a solo home run off the bat of Branndi Melero in the bottom of the frame. The Tigers looked to add another run but a pair of spectacular defensive plays by Wilson at short and Swafford in left that ended any threat of another Auburn run. Wilson recorded the second out of the inning with a leaping grab at short before Swafford robbed Auburn of a hit with a catch at the wall on the warning track just inside the left field foul pole.
Georgia starter Montemayor re-entered in the bottom of the seventh and gave up a leadoff double to Lathan. Caitlin Jordan followed with a RBI-single to center that made it a 9-8 that prompted Georgia to bring Glasco back into the circle. With the tying run at first and no outs, Glasco induced a ground out and struck the final two batters out to seal Georgia’s sweep of the Tigers, the first sweep at Auburn since 2009.
Swafford got things going quickly for the Bulldogs in the first, taking a 2-2 over the right field wall, the third time this season that she has led off the game with a home run. Katie Sowers, who pinch ran for Glasco who reached on a walk, came in to score on a sacrifice fly by Sito that made it a 2-0 game.
Auburn took a 3-2 lead in the bottom of the first inning and held on to it until Georgia’s five-run fifth. Caitlin Schultze drove in Morgan Estell, who reached on an error, with a RBI-double off of Montemayor to right field that made cut Georgia’s lead to 2-1. The second and third runs of the inning came on a two-run single by Baylee Stephens, putting the Tigers up 3-2. A spectacular play at the plate by Browne prevented a fourth run from scoring and ended the inning, as she made the catch from Puailoa in right to the left of home plate and raced back to the plate for the final out.
After nine games on the road, Georgia returns to the friendly confines of Jack Turner Stadium Wednesday, March 20 at 6 p.m., when it takes on the Gardner-Webb Runnin’ Bulldogs. Georgia’s next SEC series will begin Friday, March 22 when it hosts Ole Miss at 6 p.m.