Three Home Runs Lift Lady Mocs Over Western Carolina, 14-6

Courtesy: Dale Rutemeyer
Junior Michelle Fuzzard is now the SoCon single-season RBI record holder with 67 on the year. She went 10-for-13 with two home runs and 12 RBI on the weekend.

Chattanooga at Western Carolina
May 8, 2011

Cullowhee, N.C. (Catamount SB Complex)

Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 R H E
UTC (38-12, 20-3 SoCon)
0
4
0
0 0
10
14
19
1
WCU (18-34, 3-21 SoCon)
2
3
1
0
0
0
6
11
1
WP: Kandice Irwin (12-3) LP: Katie King (8-19)

Game Notes:
-

CULLOWHEE, N.C. - The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga junior designated player Michelle Fuzzard (Huntington Beach, Calif.) drove in five runs on the day to become the Southern Conference's single-season RBI leader with 67 in a 14-6 victory after six innings against Western Carolina on Sunday at the Catamount Softball Complex. The 19 hits for Chattanooga was a season-best for the Lady Mocs, who totaled 39 runs on 51 hits in the three-game series at the Catamount Softball Complex.

The Lady Mocs improved to 38-12 on the season and set a league-record with 20 wins, while the Catamounts fell to 18-34 and 3-21 in the conference.

A 10-run sixth inning ignited the offense as the Lady Mocs trailed 6-4 entering the frame. The long ball was utilized by Chattanooga as junior pinch hitter Jenni Martin (East Ridge, Tenn.), junior catcher Vivian Morimoto (Sao Paulo, Brazil) and Fuzzard connected to drive in eight of the runs in taking a 14-6 lead.

Senior center fielder Lyndsey Stiles (Hixson, Tenn.) set a Chattanooga single-season record with 57 runs scored as she totaled three in the contest. The Hixson, Tenn., native passed Tara Tembey, who scored 55 runs in 2005.

Freshman pitcher Caroline Curran (Bradenton, Fla.) earned her first career start in the regular season finale and lasted 1.2 innings with three strikeouts before being relieved by senior Kandice Irwin (Knoxville, Tenn.). Irwin notched the victory to improve to 12-3 on the year with five strikeouts.

The Catamounts scored the first two runs of the game on three hits. It could have been more as a ball squeaked past catcherMorimoto, but she was able to recover and toss the ball to Curran, who applied the tag at the plate.

Chattanooga flexed its offensive muscles in the second as senior right fielder Della Harrison (Nashville, Tenn.) drew a walk and junior shortstop Jessica Traxler (Chino Hills, Calif.) singled through the left side. Freshman first baseman Stephanie Rieck (Chandler, Ariz.) executed a sacrifice bunt moving the runners into scoring position.

Driving in the first run of the game was senior left fielder Lauren Flores (Ft. Oglethorpe, Ga.) with a single just past the first baseman.

Responding in the bottom-half were the Catamounts as Haley Pace connected on a three-run homer to take a 5-4 lead. Notching singles before the blast were Sara Spencer and Jordan Fulton.

Erin Foster added to the Western Carolina lead by connected on a solo home run to left, 6-4.

In the fourth, Flores drew a leadoff walk and moved to second on a sacrifice bunt by Stiles. Sophomore second baseman Sara Poteat (Thomaston, Ga.) singled up the middle and advanced to second on the throw home as the catcher tagged out Flores for the second out of the frame.

The Lady Mocs loaded the bases in the fifth and were unable to cut into the Catamount two-run lead. Morimoto and Harrison connected on back-to-back singles and a two-out single to right by Reick filled the bases.

Starting off the 10-run sixth was Stiles with a walk and moved to second on a sacrifice bunt by Poteat. Fuzzard singled up the middle to come within one run of the Catamounts. A double to right center by Baker allowed for freshman pinch runner Layne Rainey (Clarksville, Tenn.) to score after the shortstop muffed a throw from the outfield on the cutoff.

After freshman Kaiti Dutton (Tulsa, Okla.) was inserted as a pinch runner, Morimoto homered to left center as Chattanooga took its second lead of the game, 8-6. It was the sixth blast of the season for the Sao Paulo, Brazil native.

With the bases clear, back-to-back singles up the middle by Harrison and junior shortstop Jessica Traxler (Chino Hills, Calif.) put a runner in scoring position. Head coach Frank Reed elected to go with pinch hitter Martin, who did not disappoint by drilling a pitch over the left field fence. It was her fourth career blast as the other three came in the East Ridge, Tenn., native's freshman season.

A single by Flores and walk drawn by Stiles put two runners in scoring position once again, then a fielder's choice provided the second out of the inning.

After Fuzzard was properly reentered into the game, the Huntington Beach, Calif., native put an exclamation point on the weekend with a three-run blast. It was the 13th of the season and 26th of Fuzzard's career to move her into second place all alone in the Lady Mocs all-time home run chart. Baker holds the Chattanooga and SoCon home run record with 47.

Western Carolina came close to adverting the run rule as Spencer singled to lead off the sixth. A failed sacrifice bunt attempt by Fulton allowed catcher Morimoto to throw out the lead runner at second, but Fulton was able to take second on a heads up play as no one was covering the bag. She advanced to third on a ground out to second. Irwin ended the game fielding her position with poise and throwing out the speedy runner at first.

The Lady Mocs head to Statesboro, Ga., for the double-elimination SoCon Tournament and begin play on Wednesday at 2 p.m., as the No. 1 seed. Links for live stats can be found for all the games on the softball schedule page of GoMocs.com, the official website of Chattanooga Athletics. A subscription-based video broadcast is available as well courtesy of SoCon.tv.

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