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Radford edges by Virginia Tech for 21st win

By Austin White | awhite26@radford.edu

Radford’s softball team gained its second win over Virginia Tech on this year’s season. The Highlanders squeaked by with a 4-3 win while senior pitcher Abbey Morrow was credited with the win.

The game started out with great pitching and defense from both teams. Morrow made three batters strike out swinging as her fastball looked untouchable in the first two innings. Redshirt junior shortstop Marissa Gagliano and freshman third basemen Talia Douglas both forced outs to keep the Hokies off the board.

Virginia Tech started their freshman pitcher Jordan Dail. Her pitching was as effective as Morrow’s in the first two innings striking out three Highlanders herself.

Radford’s defense continued the good play, this time the outfield contributing all three outs in the top of the third inning. Sophomore Lauren Maddrey caught a line drive hit to the center field along with a fly ball for two of the outs.

In the bottom of the third, the Highlanders started to get runners on base. After walking Gagliano, Dail gave up a single to sophomore Sofia Tapia to put two on base. Douglas followed her teammates lead with a single of her own at the next at-bat scoring Gagliano.

Dail then faced junior Hannah Medlam who did not swing the bat at all. She was walked after facing a full count, loading the bases.

When senior Maggie Rowe stepped to the plate, the entire fanbase stood up in anticipation. After two balls, Rowe took a chance on the third pitch, but her hit was caught just a couple feet from the back wall for the final out of the inning.

Down by a run, the Hokies began the fourth inning very aggressively with sophomore Carrie Eberle getting on base quickly with a single. She was then switched out for pinch runner junior Kinsey Johnson.

After stealing second, Johnson advanced to third after freshman Cana Davis flown out. Junior Caitlyn Nolan beamed Morrow’s fourth pitch to her to center field scoring Johnson and tying the game 1-1.

The game began to shift in the bottom of the fifth inning. The Highlanders started to get a sense of Dail’s pitching style. After Tapia got on base from a fielder’s choice, Dail hit Douglas with her next pitch moving her to first base.

After watching the pitches closely, Medlam cracked a double to left field scoring Tapia to give Radford the lead back. Next Rowe stepped up to the plate forcing a timeout from Virginia Tech. After the intermission, Rowe singled the second pitch Dail threw to her to left field, scoring both Douglas and Medlam.

With the game now 4-1 Virginia Tech desperately tried to make a comeback. Eberle continued her good game by lining Morrow’s pitch to centerfield for a single in the first at-bat of the sixth inning. She scored after Medlam made a fielder’s choice to tag out Davis at second base.

Dail struck out both Gagliano and Tapia for the second and final out of the sixth inning. Entering the seventh and final inning, senior Caroline Schoenewald singled to right field to get the first runner on base.

After juniors Olivia Lattin and Emma Strouth grounded out for the first two outs of the inning, Eberle came through again with a clutch single to score Schoenewald and make the game 4-3. Junior Sierra Walton was next at bat and sent Morrow’s pitch to the back wall for a single.

After a brief timeout by the Highlanders, Morrow faced Davis again.

Davis made contact with the first pitch she threw at her and sent it right back to Morrow. She quickly rescued to ball in her glove and threw it to first basemen sophomore Hunter Mundy for the final out to end the game.

Photo Credit: (Radford Athletics)