BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – Scoring a combined 23 runs in two games, the Birmingham-Southern softball team swept Maryville College, Sunday, to remain undefeated at 6-0 on the season. The Panthers won by the scores of 10-1 and 13-0, both in shortened games.
In the first game, an RBI single by junior #Jena Franks# put BSC up 1-0 in the first inning. Maryville answered with its only run of the day in the top of the second, scoring on a BSC error to tie things up 1-1.
In the second, senior #Kayla Backlund# recorded a two-RBI triple to right field, and then stole home to push the lead to 4-1.
The Panthers scored again in the fourth on a sacrifice fly-out by Backlund, an RBI single by junior #Tori Harris#, and a two-RBI double down the left field line by freshman #Emily Merritt#, putting BSC up 8-1.
In the bottom of the sixth, Merritt came through again with a double to left-center to bring in two runs and end the game early with a score of 10-1.
Senior #Melissa Muehlenfeld# pitched the entire game and moved to 3-0 on the season with the win. She gave up four hits and no earned runs with six strikeouts, and still owns a 0.00 ERA on the season.
Katie Beckham started for the Scots and threw four innings, giving up 11 hits and eight earned runs. Kaitlin Gourley came in for the remaining 1.1 innings and allowed two hits and two earned runs.
Backlund was 3-for-3 at the plate with three RBI, and Merritt was 2-of-4 with four RBI. Franks went 2-for-2 and Harris was 2-for-3, and the Panthers picked up a total of 13 hits to Maryville's four.
The Panthers got off to a quick start in the second game, scoring six runs in the first inning, courtesy of a sacrifice fly-out by Harris, an RBI single through the left side by Merritt, two runs scored on a Maryville error, and a two-RBI double to center field by senior #Erin Glover#.
BSC put three more up in the second when Harris hit her second home run of the season to score two, and an RBI single to left-center by Merritt, putting the lead at 9-0.
The Panthers then went up 12-0 in the third on an RBI single to right-center from Harris, an RBI single through the left side by Franks, and an RBI single to center by freshman #Ronni Ferris#, and put the final run up in the fourth on an RBI fielder's choice by Merritt.
Harris was the Panthers' starting pitcher and moves to 2-0 on the season after throwing three innings and giving up one hit with three strikeouts. Freshman #Beth Lefler# came in for the final two innings and gave up one hit with one strikeout for the combined shutout.
Sarah Reeder started in the circle for Maryville and went two innings, allowing 10 hits and four earned runs. Gourley came in for the final two and gave up eight hits and another four earned runs with two strikeouts.
Backlund and Muehlenfeld were both 3-for-4 at the plate, while Harris was 3-for-3 with four RBI. Franks and freshman #Ashley Bice# were 2-for-3, and Merritt was 2-for-4 with three RBI. BSC totaled 18 hits for the game, while Maryville had two.
The Panthers posted eight extra-base hits for the day and now have a total of 21 on the season. The pitching staff has combined for four shutouts and 32 strikeouts while allowing only a .146 opponent batting average. BSC has out-scored its opponents 53-4 so far this season and is a perfect 13-of-13 on stolen base attempts.
BSC is at home again tomorrow, Feb. 23, taking on Spring Hill College in a 5 p.m. doubleheader at BSC Softball Park.