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SB: NC State Sweeps Doubleheader Against No. 25 USC Upstate

Posted March 6

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The NC State softball team extended its win streak to nine, after winning both games of a doubleheader against No. 25 USC Upstate Wednesday evening at Dail Stadium. The Wolfpack won the first game, 1-0, before defeating the Spartans in the second game, 5-3.

“I’m glad to get two wins,” said head coach Shawn Rychcik. “They’re a very good opponent and they’re playing really well right now. In the first game, both teams’ aces were having good games and it shaped up as a pitcher’s duel. We got that one run and that was enough.”

NC State (10-6) handed USC Upstate (19-2) its first two losses of the season, as the Spartans entered the contest with a perfect 19-0 record and No. 25 ranking in both the NFCA/USA Today and ESPN.Com/USA Softball polls.

A pitchers’ duel ensued in the first game as both starting pitchers threw complete games and kept the opposing team’s lineup off balance. NC State’s Emily Weiman won the battle to run her record in the circle to 9-5 on the season. The junior collected five strikeouts in the contest, while only allowing two walks.

USC Upstate threatened to score in the top of the fourth inning, after Shellie Robinson singled to lead off the inning and advanced to second on an error. A groundout to the pitcher moved her over to third base with one out.

Weiman buckled down to get the next batter to hit a dribbler back to her in the circle and she looked the runner on third back and fired to first base for the second out of the frame. She struck out the following hitter looking to end the inning and keep the contest scoreless.

The Wolfpack made the most of its opportunity in the bottom of the fifth when senior Kirsty Grant walked and stole second to get into scoring position. Junior Renada Davis lined an RBI-single down the left field line scoring Grant to plate the only run of the game.

In the top of the seventh, Upstate’s Cheyenne Griffin singled to lead off the inning, but she was erased on the next play after sophomore Lana Van Dyken hustled in to field a sacrifice bunt attempt and flipped it to second to get the lead runner. After a runner reached third with two outs, Weiman struck out the following hitter swinging to end the game.

Davis, Grant, Leah Jones, Chelsea Tate and Van Dyken each had one hit in the contest. Grant also had two stolen bases in the game.

In the second game, freshman Molly Hutchison stole the show by hitting two home runs and collecting four RBI. She hit a three-run blast in the first inning and a solo homer in the third inning to homer in consecutive plate appearances.

“We jumped out on them early in the second game with three runs in the first inning,” Rychcik added. “Overall, two wins against a ranked opponent is really good.”

Davis walked to start the bottom of the first and Van Dyken looked to drop down a sacrifice bunt, but the throw from the pitcher skipped away from the first baseman for a throwing error. Davis advanced to third and Van Dyken moved over to third base, before Hutchison’s first round-tripper of the game.

Sophomore Hanna Sommer followed with a walk and that ended the day for Upstate pitcher Anna Miller, who did not record an out and allowed three runs. Freshman Lexi Shubert came in to relieve her and pitched six innings.

Freshman Courtney Mirabella started the second game and pitched the first five innings, before Weiman came in to relieve her. Mirabella (1-1) picked up her first win in the circle with five strikeouts and both of the runs she gave up were unearned. Weiman was credited with the save after tossing the final two innings, her first since March 27, 2013 in the second game of a doubleheader with East Carolina.

“I’m real happy with the way Courtney [Mirabella] pitched in the second game,” said Rychcik. “I’m a little disappointed that we gave up a couple unearned runs while she was in, but I thought she threw real well.”

The two Wolfpack pitchers only allowed three hits in the contest. Grant and Jones collected the other two hits for NC State in the second game.

NC State will return to action on Saturday, March 8 when it resumes Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) play against Pittsburgh. The doubleheader on Saturday is set for noon, with the final game of the series on Sunday at noon.

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Scoreboard
Local
Final
CAR 4
TOR 1
Final
DUKE 66
UCONN 56
 
Final
CHI 103
NYK 97
 
Final
HOU 90
NOP 99
 
2nd
SAC 48
MIL 51
 
1st
GSW 11
OKC 25
 
Final
RICE 72
STTHOMASTX 61
 
Final
UVA 70
CLST 54
Final
LIU 69
FIU 58
 
Final
STET 67
GSOUT 76
 
Final
QUIN 80
LEH 65
 
Final
SFLA 69
SHU 89
Final
RICH 65
SALA 54
Final
CAN 60
USB 59
 
Final
DEL 62
TEMPL 82
Final
WCU 56
WRST 69
 
Final
VERM 56
YALE 57
 
Final
SDKST 75
IDST 72
 
Final
RIDE 62
MRGST 48
 
Final
LATU 79
NICST 54
 
Final
CHAR 75
APP 65
Final
MISS 71
CCAR 68
 
Final
DUKE 66
UCONN 56
 
Final
BRAD 80
EUREK 38
 
Final
PEAY 76
OAKC 52
 
Final
JST 66
SMISS 46
 
Final
SD 55
MNTST 53
 
Final
UAB 70
LSU 79
 
2nd
EVAN 69
OHIO 69
 
Half
CSFU 30
CSDH 17
 
Half
ORST 48
DEP 28
 
Half
PAC 35
NEV 17
 
Half
USF 46
PORST 22
 
Half
IDAHO 49
WALLA 18
 
1st
UTST 15
CALST 16
 
Final
PIT 1
COL 0
Final
PHI 1
FLA 2
Final
CAR 4
TOR 1
Final
CLB 4
WAS 5
Final
MON 1
ANA 2
 
1st
SJS 0
EDM 1
 
1st
LOS 0
STL 0
 
4th
JAC 21
TEN 13