Clearwater, Fla. – The USC Upstate softball team won its ninth straight game Wednesday afternoon as the Spartans swept a doubleheader over the Green Bay Phoenix from the Eddie C. Moore Complex.
Upstate improves to 19-2 on the season after defeating Green Bay by scores of 8-3 and 10-0 in five innings. The Phoenix fall to 4-15 overall.
The Spartans will compete this weekend in the Under Armour Showcase beginning Friday with two games against New Mexico State at 11:30 a.m. and host South Florida at 2 p.m.
Game 1 – Green Bay 3, USC Upstate 8
Holly McKinnon earned her team-leading 10th victory this season in relief as Upstate began the day with an 8-3 win in game one of the doubleheader.
McKinnon (10-1) came on in relief of starter Lexi Shubert and tossed 6.1 innings while allowing two runs on five hits, three walks and five strikeouts. Katie Rossman (0-3) suffered the loss after pitching 5.1 innings and giving up eight runs (six earned) on nine hits, one walk and no strikeouts.
The Spartans had four players record two hits, while Karla Beasley, Kori Wancheck and Megan Obier each drove in two runs. Alyssa Johnson posted a team-high two hits for Green Bay while three players had one RBI apiece.
The Phoenix took a 1-0 lead in the top of the first when McKinnon hit Tessa Mikkelson with a pitch. Upstate answered back with three runs in the bottom of the first highlighted by a two-RBI single from Beasley. Brittany Case started the scoring as her groundout to Rossman plated Kendsey Chappelear, who led off the frame with an infield single.
The Spartans extended their lead to 5-1 in the fourth on back-to-back RBI base hits with two outs from Wancheck and Obier. Wancheck contributed an RBI double down the left field line and scored the next at-bat on Obier’s single to left. Green Bay cut the lead down to 5-3 in the top of the sixth on RBI’s by Kelli Hutchinson and Brennan Engel.
Upstate sealed the victory in the bottom-half of the sixth with three runs to go ahead 8-3. Wancheck and Obier drove in their second runs of the game with two straight singles, and Gilstrap added an RBI groundout.
Game 2 – USC Upstate 10, Green Bay 0 (5)
Amy Szymanowski hit her team-leading 10th home run of the season, and Amanda Storch remained undefeated on the mound, as the Spartans completed the doubleheader sweep with a 10-0 win in game two over the Phoenix.
Storch (5-0) went the distance for Upstate and allowed just two hits and struck out three in 5.0 innings of work. Sara Simonar (0-3) suffered the loss pitching 3.1 innings and surrendering six runs on six hits, two walks and no strikeouts.
Case, Szymanowski, Beasley and Obier all had two hits, while Szymanowski and Obier both posted two RBI. Abby Brinkmeier and Hailee Frey collected one hit each for Green Bay.
After being held scoreless in the first inning, the Spartans scored at least one run in every inning after that for the 10-run win. Upstate drove in two runs in the second, one in the third, five in the fourth and two in the fifth. Obier was responsible for both runs in the second inning on her double to left center field.
The Spartans added a run in the third, increasing its lead to 3-0, on Szymanowski’s solo home run over the center field fence.
Upstate broke the game open during a five-run fourth inning to make it an 8-0 contest. Chappelear, Gilstrap, Szymanowski and Ryan Rector each had an RBI in the frame, and Chappelear came home on a throwing error by the Phoenix.
The Spartans scored twice in the top of the fifth to secure the 10-0 victory. Case provided an RBI single and Tarynn Tirpak came home on a passed ball.