(gomocs.com) CHATTANOOGA — The Chattanooga Mocs softball team continued its hot start to the 2019 season with a pair of five-inning wins over Tennessee Tech and Indiana State on a rainy first day of the Chattanooga Challenge inside Jim Frost Stadium.
Chattanooga (7-0) defeated TTU (3-3), 10-2, in a five-inning, run-rule contest before earning a rain-shortened 6-5 victory over ISU (3-1) in the nightcap of the doubleheader. UTC has now won its first seven games of the season and has outscored opponents 55-16 during that span.
Play continues in the Chattanooga Challenge tomorrow with a full slate of games. For tournament schedule, results, weather updates & more, please visit our TOURNAMENT CENTRAL page.
GAME 1 BOX » Chattanooga 10, Tennessee Tech 2 (5)
Tennessee Tech opened up the game with a one-run first frame to take an early 1-0 lead. It was sparked by two-out walk and a double to left center before a foul out to first ended the threat.
Emily Coltharp led the home half off with a walk before beating out a fielder’s choice at second base on a Hayleigh Weissenbach ground ball, setting up first and second with no outs. After a wild pitch, Aly Walker scored Coltharp on an RBI ground out to the pitcher to tie the game 1-1.
Tech continued the scoring in the top of the second with a one-out single followed by an RBI double to the wall in right center to pull ahead 2-1. That would mark the end of the scoring starting pitcher Celie Hudson allowed the rest of the way.
UTC exploded for a seven-run third inning on the help of five hits, four singles and a double. Back-to-back lead-off walks from Alyssa Coppinger and Coltharp eventually pieced together a first and third one-out situation. Walker and Emma Sturdivant delivered with consecutive RBI singles to put the Mocs ahead 3-2.
Amanda Beltran added to the rally with a two-RBI double before Halie Williamsonchipped in with a two-run single. Coppinger capped the seven-run inning off with an RBI double inside the third base bag and put UTC up by a sizable 8-2 margin.
Chattanooga added a run in the fourth before completing the run-rule victory on the help of a TTU throwing error in the fifth, capturing the game 10-2.
Hudson (3-0) settled in after a slow start to pick up her third win of the season. She tossed all 5.0 innings and allowed just five hits and two earned runs, both coming in the first two innings of the game. Hudson struck out five while walking a pair.
In addition to pounding out 10 hits at the plate, 10 different Mocs scored a run during the victory. Beltran (2-for-3) and Coppinger (2-for-3) were the lone multi-hit performances in the lineup. They each doubled and singled while combining for three RBI (Beltran, 2).
GAME 2 BOX » Chattanooga 6, Indiana State 5 (5/RAIN)
It was an offensive battle early on in a game that featured a steady rain from its first pitch to the last. ISU opened the game with a quick 2-0 lead after scoring two runs on the help of three hits and one UTC error.
In the home half of the first, Amanda Beltran blasted a grand slam with two outs deep over the left-center wall to put Chattanooga ahead 4-2. A defensive miscue from the Indiana State outfield allowed the inning to continue, marking all four runs as unearned.
ISU and UTC traded runs in the second to push the game to 5-3 heading into the third. Aly Walker tallied an RBI single during that frame. The Sycamores tied things up 5-5 in the top of the third on a sacrifice fly and a two-out RBI single to left field.
Makenzie Grider entered the game as a pinch-runner after a lead-off double from Beltran placed a runner at second with no outs. Katie Corum dropped a bunt in an attempt to sacrifice Grider to third, but an ISU throwing error to first base allowed the go-ahead run to come in to score.
Officials were forced to call the game in the top of the sixth due to rain/unsafe field conditions.
Allison Swinford (1-0) picked up her first win of the season in the circle during an extended relief role. Swinford tossed a spotless 4.0 innings while allowing just four hits and striking out two. She relieved starting pitcher Mariah Ramirez.
Chattanooga registered eight hits with a pair of doubles and a homerun during the win. Beltran finished 2-for-3 with a homerun and 4 RBI. Emily Coltharp accounted for the other multi-hit game with a 2-for-3 (both singles) performance. Emma Sturdivant went 1-for-2 with an RBI.
– Chattanooga starts the season 7-0 for just the second time… ties longest streak in program history (2016)… out-scored opponents 55-16 in seven games… scored first-inning runs in all but two games this season.
– Amanda Beltran leads team in batting average (.500), HRs (3), RBI (11), slugging % (1.050) and total bases (21)… recorded RBI in all but two games this season… has hit in all but two games… has reached base in all seven.
– Celie Hudson improved to 3-0 with 2.21 ERA… has allowed just 11 hits in 19.0 innings… struck out 23… allowed only six earned runs.
Chattanooga continues play in the Chattanooga Challenge tomorrow for a pair of games at 1:30 & 4 p.m. UTC will face Dayton in game one before concluding their tournament slate against Kennesaw State in game two.