VSU Softball Torches Christian Brothers 11-0

| February 22, 2016


source: VStateBlazers.com

source: VStateBlazers.com

VALDOSTA – Brandy Morgan started it off, and Kiley Rusen finished it, as the two Valdosta State softball sluggers bookended Valdosta State’s 11-run day with home runs to give the Blazers a five-inning win over the Christian Brothers Lady Bucs on Sunday afternoon at Steel’s Diamond at Blazer Park in Valdosta, Ga.

The Blazers improved to 12-3-1 on the season with the win and bumped their conference record up to 4-2 against league opponents, while the Lady Bucs fell to 3-11 overall and 0-6 in Gulf South Conference play.

Rusen came to the plate in the fifth inning still looking for her first hit of the game, and the senior came through with a walk off grand slam to right field, which put the Blazers on top 11-0 and ended the game by way of the mercy rule. The homer extended Rusen’s hitting streak to six games, and capped off a week in which the lefty hit .588 with five long balls and 15 RBI’s. Her season totals of nine homers and 29 runs batted in currently lead the GSC.

Before Rusen’s final swing, Morgan sparked a three-run third inning for Valdosta State with a solo shot to center for her third homer of the weekend. Taylor Hartenbach, who went 2-for-3 on the day and 6-for-8 on the weekend, blistered a double to right center in the next at bat and Lauren Shaw followed with a sacrifice bunt that was misplayed at third by Blake Andres. Shaw moved into scoring position with a stolen base, and Chelsea Canara dropped down a squeeze bunt to score Hartenbach and advance Shaw to third. Freshman Tara McIntyre capped off the inning with an RBI grounder to second, which plated Shaw and gave VSU a 3-0 lead.

Morgan and Hartenbach fueled a big fourth inning, accounting for two of the Blazers four runs in the frame with RBI base hits. Hayley Cruthers added a sacrifice fly in the inning for an RBI, which helped set the stage for the thrilling fifth inning conclusion.

Caitlyn Calhoun put the finishing touches on a stellar week with her third straight shutout. Calhoun lifted her season strikeout total to 70 with four strikeouts in five innings, and the senior hurler improved her record to 8-1 on the season.

Next up for the Blazers, it’s a doubleheader matchup against the No. 14 Florida Tech Panthers on Tuesday, beginning at 1:00 p.m. The South Region showdown will take place in Melbourne, Fla.


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