CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. – After splitting its Saturday doubleheader, the Chattanooga Mocs softball team wanted to make sure the third game claimed the series win. The offense exploded for a 12-2 routing of Elon Sunday afternoon at Frost Stadium.
Freshman first baseman Jesslyn Stockard (Ringgold, Ga.) was 2-for-3 at the plate, driving in five runs on a double and grand slam.
“Jesslyn is a dangerous batter and can makes things happen,” Head Coach Frank Reed said. “She was a batter that was striking out nearly every other at-bat early in the season, but she has settled down and started putting the bat on the ball. She is dangerous when she connects and we saw that today.”
Elon was the first to strike in the top of the first inning. The Phoenix plated one run as Carleigh Nester singled to right field to score Alaina Hall from third. Hall set up the score with a one-out triple, but starting pitcher Taylor Deason (Clarksville, Tenn.) was able to work out of the inning as Nester was caught stealing and a fly to right from Emily Roper ended the inning.
Chattanooga answered back in the bottom of the second with one run of its own to tie the game 1-1. Junior Nicole Osterman (Kissimmee, Fla.) lifted a solo-homerun to dead-center, her fourth blast of the season, to knot the game.
After Deason held the Elon bats scoreless in the top of the third, the Chattanooga offense thanked the junior with seven runs on five hits in the bottom half. Alyssa Taylor (Orange, Calif.) began the route with an RBI-single to right-center. Sam Taylor (Chickamauga, Ga.) came around to score on the go-ahead base knock. Then, with the bases loaded, Osterman was hit by a pitch to drive in the Mocs third run.
Leading by two with the bases loaded, the power-hitting Stockard sent a grand slam over the leftfield fence to blow the game wide open, 8-1 in the third.
Sophomore Anyssa Robles (Lawrenceville, Ga.) tacked on a ninth run, pushing the Phoenix up against the run-rule, in the bottom of the fourth on an RBI-double to score junior Sarah Beth Roberts (Mt. Juliet, Tenn.) from second. Kaiti Dutton (Tulsa, Okla.) then put the game out of reach with a two-run double to right-center. Stockard stacked on a 12th run with a run-scoring double to left – her second extra-base hit of the game.
Deason picked up the win – her 10th of the season – while Katie Henderson (Hixson, Tenn.) closed out the game in the fifth with a strikeout. Deason allowed just five hits and two runs over four innings of work.
The Mocs are in Birmingham, Ala., next weekend as Chattanooga takes on Samford. The Bulldogs are currently third place in the SoCon while UTC ranks second.