MEMPHIS, Tn. (WALB) - The No. 2 Valdosta State softball team belted seven home runs in a 15-2 rout of Christian Brothers to sweep the three-game series. VSU improved to 32-3 on the year and 25-2 in Gulf South Conference play, while it ran its winning streak to 21 games.
Pennington now has 21 home runs for the season for a tie for seventh all-time in GSC history in a season. Her three dingers tied the GSC record for home runs in a game by one player, set 13 times and most recently by Robb on Apr. 11 versus West Alabama. The seven round-trippers tied the GSC record for home runs in a game, most recently done by North Alabama versus Christian Brothers in 2016.
VSU hit six home runs in a game twice this season for the previous school record. VSU leads the nation with 87 home runs and 11 shy of the school-record for home runs in a season set in 2009 with 98, which also tied the GSC record for home runs in a season.
The Blazers got things started in the first inning as M. Hill reached on an error to begin the game and Pennington hit a two run shot, followed by L. Hill for a solo for back-to-back jacks and a 3-0 lead. The Buccaneers answered in the bottom of the inning with a two-run home run from Kendall Westbrooks. It was the first home run VSU sophomore hurler Samantha Richards had allowed since allowing two against Delta State on Apr. 3, for a span of seven games.
From there, it was all Blazers as M. Hill blasted her 14th home run of the season – a solo shot in the second for a 4-2 lead and then VSU plated nine runs in the third, matching the season-high for runs in an inning this season. Gano hit a two run home run, while Pennington hit a three-run shot and Robb a solo blast to highlight the frame and a 13-2 lead. Pennington then began the fifth with a solo shot and her third of the game, while freshman Katie Proctor hit a sacrifice fly for the 15thrun of the game.
The Blazers have now scored 15 runs in a game three times this season, including twice this weekend as VSU outscored CBU 39-4 for the series. Richards won her 21st game of the season (21-2) going three innings, allowing two hits, two earned runs and fanned five, while senior Avery Lamb pitched the final two frames, allowing one hit and fanning two. M. Hill finished 2 for 3 with three runs scored, a home run and three RBI, while L. Hill was 2 for 3 with two runs scored, a home run and one RBI.
The Blazers, who lead the GSC by three games, close out the regular season next weekend in a key series at Alabama Huntsville, May 1-2. Saturday’s doubleheader is scheduled for 1 p.m. ET, followed by a single game Sunday at 1 p.m. ET.