No. 2 Valdosta State Sweeps Doubleheader Against Florida Tech
By Florida Tech Athletic Communications // March 10, 2015
Panthers lose both games 4-0, 3-2
BREVARD COUNTY, FLORIDA – Florida Tech softball (19-7, 2-1 SSC) gave the No. 2 Blazers of Valdosta State a battle, but were swept in a doubleheader at Steel’s Diamond at Blazer Park Tuesday afternoon.
The Panthers held the Blazers in check early in game one but eventually were overcome by the home squad, falling 4-0.
Starter Rachel Pence was dealing early, retiring the first nine batters she faced before Jaime Phillips slapped a hard grounder off the glove of Taylor Peterson at third for a hit.
The Panthers struggled to field the ball in the fourth, allowing the Blazers to score three runs with a pair of errors.
VSU added an insurance run in the sixth when Kiley Rusen nailed a solo home run to right. Pence recorded one out before allowing a seeing eye single that brought in Amanda Kahn in relief, who retired the side with no further damage being done.
The four runs were plenty for Blazer starter Caitlyn Calhoun, who allowed just two hits and no runs in her 14th complete game of the season.
Brigit Godfrey provided both of the Panthers hits in the contest, lacing a single through the right side in the third and singling to center in the fifth.
Despite taking her third loss of the season, Pence pitched well against the stout Blazer offense. The sophomore allowed five hits and two earned runs while fanning eight in her 5.1 innings of work.
The Panthers pushed VSU to the absolute limit in game two but were ultimately outdone 3-2.
Jaime Phillips gave VSU the lead in the second inning, delivering a single down the left field line to plate a pair and give the Blazers a 2-0 advantage.
The Panthers bounced back in the fifth. Peterson walked on four pitches and Nicole Shinsky just missed her second home run of the season, hitting a double off the left field wall.
Jessica Callahan and Kaci Kelley took turns laying down suicide squeeze bunts, tying the game at 2-2.
However, the Blazers would get the last laugh as Brandy Morgan delivered a single with the bases loaded to bring the winning run across the plate.
Pence also took the loss in game two, giving up two hits and the game-winning run in her two innings. Starter Taylor Smith received a no decision after allowing a pair of runs on five hits in 4.1 innings pitched.
The Panthers return to Sunshine State Conference play on Friday and Saturday with a three-game series against league-leading Eckerd.