GREENSBORO, N.C. – The Chattanooga Mocs softball team claimed a convincing 6-0 win over Furman in the second round of the Southern Conference Softball Championships Thursday afternoon at UNCG Softball Stadium.
The Mocs offense put up six runs on 10 hits and took advantage of four Paladin errors over the course of the seven-inning contest. Along with an aggressive offense, sophomore starting pitcher Katie Henderson (Hixson, Tenn.) continued her dominance in the circle with a four-hit, seven-strikeout outing.
“I was really happy to see the offense show up as strong as it did,” Head Coach Frank Reed said. “Katie pitched another great game and we hit the ball well.”
Her second shutout of the tournament, Henderson has not allowed a run to score in 27 consecutive innings. Her scoreless-inning streak in the tournament is up to 14 and her strikeout total has risen to 22.
Scoreless through two, Chattanooga put five runs on the board in the third on four hits and one error. Junior Nicole Osterman (Kissimmee, Fla.) got the scoring started with a solo-homerun to left-center for her fifth round-tripper of 2014. It was her third homerun hit in Greensboro, N.C., as she blasted two against UNCG on the road during the regular season.
The Mocs tallied four more runs with two outs on a couple of timely doubles against Furman starting pitcher Lauren Collier and reliever Alex Sappington. With two runners on, senior Stephanie Rieck (Chandler, Ariz.) sprayed a double to left-center and junior Sarah Beth Roberts (Mt. Juliet, Tenn.) smashed a frozen-rope double to the same spot. Scoring on the two plays were Jesslyn Stockard (Ringgold, Ga.), Kaiti Dutton (Tulsa, Okla.), Sam Taylor (Chickamauga, Ga.) and Rieck.
A sixth run was tacked on in the bottom of the fourth courtesy of Dutton. With Cricket Blanco (Maryville, Tenn.) aboard at first and pinch runner Marina Wilkerson (Hogansville, Ga.) at second, a single down the line in right allowed Wilkerson to motor home.
Dutton was 3-for-4 on the afternoon with an RBI and run scored while both Osterman and sophomore Anyssa Robles (Lawrenceville, Ga.) tallied two hits.
Chattanooga moves on to play Friday at 10 a.m. in the semifinals against No. 4 Samford.