Kennesaw, Ga. – The USC Upstate softball team fell in the finale of a three-game series to the Kennesaw State Owls 8-1 on Sunday afternoon at Bailey Park.
Upstate falls to 30-9 on the season and 3-3 in league play, while Kennesaw State improves to 27-10 overall and 4-2 in the conference.
- Bottom 1st – The Owls scored twice in the bottom of the 1st to take an early 2-0 lead over the Spartans. Noelle Winkles began the scoring with her RBI fielder's choice that drove in Taylor Denton. Kira Czyrklis later added an RBI groundout to second base.
- Bottom 3rd – Chandler Griffin extended Kennesaw State's lead to 3-0 with two outs on her RBI single to left field.
- Bottom 4th – The Owls made it a 4-0 contest on a two-out RBI single to right field by Katey Lynch.
- Top 5th – Upstate cut its deficit down to 4-1 following an RBI double to left field by Ansley Gilstrap. Kristen Wright, pinch-hitting for Kayla Hussey, led off the inning with an infield single and scored from first on the extra-base hit from Gilstrap.
- Bottom 5th – Kennesaw State tallied four runs in the fifth to push its lead out to 8-1. Olivia Tamewitz plated the first two runs with her double to center field and two more scored after Denton reached on a Spartan fielding error.
- Holly McKinnon (16-5) took the loss allowing two runs on two hits, one walk and no strikeouts in one inning of work.
- Alley Cutting (14-5) earned the win with a complete game and gave up one run on nine hits, one walk and seven strikeouts.
- Lexi Shubert came on in relief of McKinnon and threw 3.2 innings while surrendering six runs (four earned) on eight hits, one walk and four strikeouts.
- Erin Hill also threw 1.1 innings of relief and did not allow a run on no hits and no walks.
- Gilstrap was one of three Upstate players to finish with two hits along with Ryan Rector and Megan Obier. Gilstrap also had one RBI.
- Tamewitz drove in a game-high two RBI for the Owls while Czyrklis, Griffin and Courtney Sutter posted two hits each.
- The Spartans return home on Wednesday, April 5 to host Charlotte in a doubleheader beginning at 4 p.m.