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APSU Softball shuts out Bucknell 2-0, Rutgers 7-0

 

APSU Sports Information

APSU SoftballMacon, GA – The streak continues for the Austin Peay State University softball team, Saturday at Sikes Field, as it claimed its eighth and ninth consecutive victories — both in shutout fashion — in downing Bucknell, 2-0, and Rutgers, 7-0.

Austin Peay Softball beats Bucknell and Rutgers Saturday, extends win streak to nine. (APSU Sports Information)

Austin Peay Softball beats Bucknell and Rutgers Saturday, extends win streak to nine. (APSU Sports Information)

With the wins, the Govs improve to 15-7 on the season, the best start by an Austin Peay softball team since 1989, when they opened the season 16-7 on its way to a 32-19 campaign.

Austin Peay will conclude its stay at the classic on Sunday with a 12:15pm contest versus host Mercer.

Game 1

Austin Peay 2, Bucknell 0

Austin Peay scored two early runs and starter Kelsey Gross made it hold up, as the Govs defeated Bucknell, 2-0.

Tied 0-0 after one inning, Bailey Shorter got things going for the Govs with a single to left field to open the inning, then move to second base on an infield single by Emily Harkleroad.

An out later, Shorter would score from second base to make it 1-0 when an attempted pick-off throw by the Bucknell catcher went into center field, with Harkleroad moving all the way around to third base.

Brooke Pfefferle would take advantage, driving in Harkleroad with a single up the middle to make it 2-0.

Those two runs would be all that Gross (3-3) would need, as the sophomore scattered five hits in picking up the complete-game, shutout victory, walking one and striking out six.

Game 2

Austin Peay 7, Rutgers 0

The Govs would take an early lead then pull away late, as Kelly Mardones held Big 10 Conference member Rutgers to just four hits and one walk, while needing only 81 pitches to earn a 7-0 victory over the Scarlet Knights (14-14).

Kacy Acree would get the Govs on the board in the bottom of the first inning, stealing home on a delay with Danielle Liermann faking a steal of second base.

The score would remain that way until the top of the fourth when Acree would break the game open with a three-run homer, set up by a two-out hit by Pfefferle and a walk to Natalie Schilling.

Austin Peay would seal the game away with three more runs in the top of the sixth, with Schilling, Morgan Rackel and Carly Mattson picking up RBI singles.

Shorter would finish the game reaching base four times on three singles and a walk, while Acree and Pfefferle had two hits each.

Inside the Box Score

Kelsey Gross has thrown shutouts in her last two starts.

Govs pitchers have thrown five shutouts in APSU’s last eight games.

The victory versus Rutgers in the first in eight tries for the Govs versus a Big 10 Conference schools in their history.

The seven shutouts so far this season is the most by a Govs pitching staff since 2007 when they recorded nine shutouts.

The Govs 12 hits versus Rutgers tied their season high.

Govs leadoff batter Natalie Schilling has reached base in 12 straight games.

Coaching Quotables with Head Coach Rodney DeLong

On the pitching effort
“You don’t win this many games in a row without pitcher preforming the way they are preforming. I’m proud of their efforts and continual improvement and coach J (Jamie Allred) has done a great job with them and definitely in the right direction.”

On defense doing their part
“We’ve been getting great pitching and timely hitting during the streak, but defensively I’ve been very happy with our defense during this run. They’re playing very well, and they continue to get better and better and that is going to be key for us as we move into conference play.”

On a new attitude
“This streak is kind of what we’ve been telling them since the fall. We’re good enough to win this conference and we are good enough to beat anybody we play. The more we win the more we believe it and the better we get.”


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