April 19, 2014
ATHENS, Ga. - The No. 15/18 Georgia softball took an 11-2, five-inning win over No. 23/23 Auburn in the first game of Saturday's doubleheader. With the win, Georgia moves to 37-8 on the year and 10-6 in Southeastern Conference play. Auburn fell to 32-13-1 overall and 6-10 in league play.
Chelsea Wilkinson got the win to improve to 23-5 on the year. She allowed just one hit and one walk and struck out seven in five shutout innings in the circle. Bekah Farris also saw time in the circle for Georgia, allowing two runs, one earned, on two hits. Auburn's Lexi Davis suffered the loss to fall to 16-9 on the year. She allowed six runs on six hits and five walks in 2.1 innings of work. Hilary Mavromat threw 0.2 innings, allowing four runs on three hits and a walk. Jenna Abbott threw the final inning for Auburn, allowing one run on one hit, while striking out two.
The bats were hot for the Bulldogs, as they recorded 10 hits, including three home runs and a double. Among the home runs was a grand slam by Alex Hugo. Paige Wilson and Anna Swafford also hit a home run for Georgia.
It didn't take long for the Bulldogs to score, as Wilson led off the bottom of the first inning with a home run to left center. It was the ninth home run of the year for the junior. Geri Ann Glasco drew a five pitch walk that gave Georgia a runner. With two outs, Tina Iosefa doubled to right center, allowing Glasco to score and make it a 2-0 game.
Auburn got its first base runner in the top of the second on a one out walk, but Wilkinson settled in and struck out the next two batters to end the inning.
Swafford walked to lead off the bottom of the second and moved to third on a stolen base and a groundout. With one away, Samantha LaZear put the ball in play and singled over the head of the Auburn shortstop, allowing Swafford to cross the plate and give the Bulldogs a 3-0 lead. Georgia loaded the bases but was unable to add to its lead as the final out was recorded.
In the bottom of the third inning Hugo hit her first grand slam as a Bulldog, helping Georgia extend its lead to 10-0. Iosefa led off the inning with a walk before pinch runner Niaja Griffin came in and stole second. Swafford walked, putting runners on first and second with one out. Bethany Beggs hit a laser to second for an infield single that allowed Griffin to break for home and slide around the tag at the plate for the fourth run of the game. During the play, Swafford slid under the tag at third base, putting runners at the corners with one out.
LaZear drove in a run with an infield single to the pitcher that allowed Swafford to score and give Georgia a 5-0 lead. Wilson picked up an RBI with a single to center that scored Beggs. Glasco loaded the bases with a walk. Hugo fell behind in the count early but worked the count full. She took the payoff pitch high and deep into the pines in right center for a grand slam that put Georgia up 10-0.
Wilkinson continued her dominating performance, striking out the side in the bottom of the fourth.
Georgia tacked on another run in the top of the fifth inning on a solo home run by Swafford to make it an 11-0 game.
The Bulldogs turned to Farris in the bottom of the fifth inning. She gave up a home run and a double that allowed Auburn to avoid the shutout. Wilkinson reentered the game and recorded the first two outs. After a hit batter, an error allowed Auburn's second run to score. Griffin sealed the game with a spectacular diving grab in shallow right center.
Georgia and Auburn will play the second game of the day and the series at approximately 4:30 p.m.