The Emory women’s softball team continued their impressive season, recording sweeps in a pair of two-game series against Covenant College (Ga.) on March 21 and LaGrange College (Ga.) on March 24.
The Eagles were dominant in their first game against the Covenant Scots and forced the mercy rule with an 8-0 lead after five innings. Sophomore pitcher Madison Schaefer cruised to her fourth win of the season with a two-hit complete game. Junior second baseman Sarah Katz was the star of the show offensively as she had two extra-base hits, including a three-RBI triple in the third inning that put the game out of the Scots’ reach.
The second game proved far less one-sided than the first as Emory held a narrow 2-1 lead through the first three innings. In the top of the fourth inning, the Eagles notched a pair of two-RBI hits by senior catcher Lana Herrmann and senior outfielder Jenna Wilson. This opened up a convincing 6-1 lead for the Eagles, and despite giving up a run in the bottom half of the fourth, Emory extended the lead to 8-2 by adding two more runs in the sixth. However, Covenant still had some fight left in them and produced a five-run sixth inning to cut the lead to one. Emory used their final at-bats productively and once again established a larger lead with a three-run seventh inning.
In relief of senior pitcher Madeline Maday, senior pitcher Toko Miller took the mound for the Eagles. Miller retired the Scots in order in the bottom of the seventh, securing her third save of the season as Emory completed the sweep against Covenant with an 11-7 win.
Head Coach Adrianna Baggetta was delighted with how her team responded to Covenant’s late push and believes the team has improved at reacting positively when other teams score.
“There is less of a panic when a team scores a run [against us],” Baggetta said. “We are confident in our ability to score more runs and make timely plays defensively.”
Emory then returned home for a double header against a hot LaGrange team riding a six-game win streak.
Emory wasted no time in the first game, scoring a pair of runs in the first inning thanks to an RBI single from Wilson and a sacrifice fly from senior shortstop Cassie Baca. The strong start continued in the second, with RBIs courtesy of junior outfielder Sami Feller and Wilson. Miller, back on the mound for the Eagles, pitched a complete-game, allowing just three hits and one run. Emory added a pair of insurance runs late to walk away as 6-1 winners.
In the second game, a four-run third inning highlighted by freshman outfielder Baylee Wall’s two-RBI single propelled Emory to yet another large and early lead. LaGrange cut into the Eagles’ five-run advantage with a three-run fifth inning but couldn’t complete the comeback. Once again, Emory’s clutch late-game pitching was crucial in preserving the lead, this time provided by Maday.
With the four wins this past week, Emory now boasts a 12-4 record and have won 10 of their last 11 games. Miller believes the team is currently in a great position to achieve a lot this season.
“This team is the strongest I have seen over my four years and has the potential to win [a national championship],” Miller said. “[We want to] keep improving, and I’m hoping to see us peak in the postseason.”
The Eagles return for an away double header against Berry College (Ga.) on March 27.