April 23, 2009
HUNTINGTON, W.Va. -
Junior Katie Murphree (Tallahassee, Fla.) and senior Autumn Mitchell (Shady Spring, W.Va.) each picked up a pair of one-hit complete game shutouts as the Marshall University softball team defeated Morehead in a doubleheader 2-0 and 5-0 Thursday at Dot Hicks Field.
In game one, Murphree carried a perfect game into the fifth inning before giving up her first hit while Mitchell gave up her hit in the first innings as both pitchers combined for 11 strikeouts, one walk and one hit batter.
"Katie did an exceptional job today, should have had a no hitter on the pop fly," head coach Shonda Stanton said. "We have talked with our team this year about wanting the ball and having that drive and passion to take control of the game.
"Autumn did a great job on the day picking up another complete game shutout. I was please in all three phases of the game. Obviously, we could have had some better at-bats but got the outs when we needed them and run support as well. I'm looking forward to our last home series this weekend."
With the victories, both pitchers picked up their 10th wins of the season as Murphree picked up her second complete game shutout and Mitchell's first of the year. The last time Marshall pitched back-to-back shutouts was March 25, 2006 against UAB.
With two wins Thursday, the Thundering Herd improves to 26-15 overall while the Eagles fall to 30-16. Marshall comes back Saturday to play its final home series of 2009 as the team hosts first place in Conference USA East Carolina.
The doubleheader against East Carolina is scheduled for a 1p.m. EST start and Gametracker will be available. Live broadcast can be heard on WMUL 88.1 FM and at http://www.marshall.edu/wmul.
The Herd jumped on the board early in game one plating its first run as senior Joscelyn Bitner (Virginia Beach, Va.) singled to left field and advanced to second as two fielders for Morehead collided. Bitner stole third base before junior Caitlyn Jackson (Ontario, Calif.) flied out allowing her to tag up and score.
Murphree continued to mow down batters through the first five innings retiring the first 12 batters before Brianca Cardenas singled to right as a ball just dropped in from of freshman Melissa Loesing (Grapevine, Texas).
In the sixth, Marshall tacked on an insurance run as the inning started as Jackson walked before sophomore Melanie Stoehr (Tacoma, Wash.) singled to right putting runners on first and second. Senior Rachel Schmidt then came to the plate singling down the left field line scoring Jackson.
Down 2-0, the Eagles had its second base run of the game in the seventh as Samantha Woodall was hit by pitch but could not get anything starting and having its 11-game winning streak snapped. Murphree finished
Bitner and Stoehr both finished 2-for-3 as Jackson and Schmidt both picked up an RBI a piece. The team also finished the game with no strikeouts for the second time this season.
In the first innings, Mitchell would walk Bri Jones before giving up a hit to Woodall before settling down and retiring the next 19 batters. In the contest, she finished with six strikeouts
Just as in game one, Marshall jumped out in the first scoring the contest's first run. Freshman Alianna Telles (Sylmar, Calif.) and Bitner started things off with back-to-back singles before Jackson laid down a sacrifice bunt to move both runners.
The run would cross the plate as Telles and Bitner moved on a wild pitch and taking the game's first lead. In the bottom of the fourth, the team expanded its lead to 4-0 with a three run inning.
With one out, junior Marcena Bertoldo (Beaumont, Calif.) blasted her third home run of the season into the Herd Hooligans in left field. After the innings second out, senior Kelly Nielson (Tucson, Ariz.) walked and sophomore Jessica Hughes (Stillwater, Okla.) singled putting two on.
In a big situation to cushion the lead, Telles stepped to the plate nailing a shot to right center scoring both runners. The Herd plated its fifth run as Loesing, who was pinch running for Nielson, came into score on a pair of errors by Morehead.