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Virginia Tech Offense Too Much for Herd in Doubleheader Sweep Wednesday

March 22, 2006

BLACKSBURG, Va. - Virginia Tech's Stephanie Savre and Alisia Narodowski each hit two home runs to lead the Hokies to a doubleheader sweep of the Marshall Thundering Herd Wednesday afternoon at Tech Softball Park.

Tech (21-7) hit six home runs during the twin bill, while holding the potent Thundering Herd (16-14) offense to two round-trippers. The Hokies won the first game 9-5 and completed the sweep with a 12-5 win in game two.

Sophomore Rachel Folden (Baldwin Park, Calif./Diamond Bar) hit her team- and conference-leading 14th home run of the season in game one. Folden is four home runs shy of tying the Conference USA single-season home run record (18).

Virginia Tech's Angela Tincher (12-2) won both contests in the circle for the Hokies, striking out a combined 24 Herd batters in 9 1/3 innings.

Game 1 (Virginia Tech 9, Marshall 5)

Game 1 Box Score

Virginia Tech jumped out to a quick 4-0 lead and never looked back in a 9-5 victory in game one.

Marshall starting pitcher Veronica Ralston (Tucson, Ariz./Catalina Foothills) was dealt the loss (9-7), lasting 3 1/3 innings. Ralston surrendered seven runs on eight hits, while walking four and striking out a pair.

Tincher (11-2) earned her third straight victory in the circle, striking out 10 batters in four innings. Katie Maynard nailed down her first save of the season, allowing three runs on three hits with five strikeouts in three innings.

Folden and Amanda Williams (Powder Springs, Ga./Harrison) each drove in two runs on a pair of hits.

Savre went 2-for-2 with two home runs and five RBI, while Kelly Brown and Kelsy Rokey each added two RBI.

It was another slow start for the Thundering Herd, as Virginia Tech scored three runs in the opening frame to take an early 3-0 lead.

After Callie Rhodes drew a lead-off walk, Narodowski followed with a single to right field. Brown then drew a walk to load the bases with nobody out. Savre then ripped a three-RBI double to right-center field, giving the Hokies the three-run advantage.

The Hokies left two runners on base, as Ralston retired two of the last three batters to end the inning.

Virginia Tech added to its lead in the ensuing inning, taking a 4-0 lead after two complete innings. Rhodes registered a lead-off hit and Brown later plated her with an RBI double.

However, Marshall would not remain scoreless in the third, as the Thundering Herd broke onto the scoreboard. With one out, Sara Spenia (Las Vegas, Nev./Durango) hit a slow dribbling single in front of the circle. Two batters later, Williams cleared the bases with a two-run home run to right field, cutting the Hokies' lead to 4-2.



The two-run deficit would be as close as the Herd could get. Virginia Tech regained the four-run lead, 6-2, in the bottom of the third on a two-run home run by Rokey.

Savre knocked in two more runs in the fourth with a two-run home run to right-center field, extending the Virginia Tech lead to 8-2. Prior to Savre's at bat, Ralston was replaced by junior Amanda Luers (Dover, Ohio/Dover) in the circle.

Virginia Tech made it five consecutive innings in which it scored a run, extending its lead to 9-2 in the fifth. Brown's RBI triple to left-center field plated Narodowski for the seven-run cushion.

Marshall scored two runs in the sixth, cutting the Hokies' lead to 9-4 thanks to Folden's 14th home run of the season. The Herd added another run in the seventh, but it was not enough as the Herd's late-inning rally fell short 9-5.

Virginia Tech 9, Marshall 5 (Mar 22, 2006 at Blacksburg, Va.) (Game 1)
Marshall............ 002 002 1 -  5  6  0      (16-13)
Virginia Tech....... 312 210 X -  9 11  2      (20-7)
Pitchers: Marshall - Veronica Ralston; Amanda Luers(4). Virginia Tech - Angela Tincher; Katie Maynard(5).
Win-Angela Tincher(11-2)  Save-Katie Maynard(1)  Loss-Veronica Ralston(9-8)  T-1:59

Game 2 (Virginia Tech 12, Marshall 5 - 6 innings)

Game 2 Box Score

Like Virginia Tech did in game one, Marshall jumped out to an early four-run lead. However, the Herd was unable to hold on in a 12-5 loss to the Hokies.

Thundering Herd starting pitcher Abigail Harter (Monmouth, Ore./Santiam Christian) suffered her first loss (6-7) in her last four appearances. Harter allowed six runs on five hits in 3 1/3 innings.

Tincher (12-2) earned her second win on the afternoon, striking out 14 batters in a 5 1/3 innings of relief.

Samantha Rodriguez (Oakley, Calif./Freedom) led the Herd offensively, going 2-for-3 with three RBI. For the Hokies, Savre went 2-for-3 with three RBI, while Narodowski went 3-for-4 with four RBI.

Marshall did not repeat its slow start from game one, as the Thundering Herd took an early 3-0 lead in the first inning.

With two runners on and one out, Rodriguez drilled a two-RBI single down the right field line, plating Amanda Williams and Ashley Mitchell (Kennesaw, Ga./Harrison) for a 2-0 lead. Deanna Tourville (Rescue, Calif./Ponderosa) knocked in the Herd's third run of the inning with an RBI double to center field.

Tech starter Karie Morrison was pulled after two-thirds of an inning in favor of game one winner Tincher. Morrison surrendered all three of the Herd's runs in the first.

Virginia Tech cracked the scoreboard in the bottom of the first with a solo home run to left field by Narodowski.

Marshall added two runs in the third inning, extending it leads to 5-1. Tincher struck out seven consecutive batters until Rodriguez's RBI single through the left side plated Williams. Rodriguez's third RBI of the game extended the Herd's lead to three runs, 4-1. Rodriguez later scored on a wild pitch, giving the Herd a four-run cushion.

However, Tech scored 10 unanswered runs to take a commanding 11-5 lead. Narodowski added her second home run of the game in the third with a two-run home to straightaway center field. Narodowski's blast trimmed the Herd's lead to two runs, 5-3.

Virginia Tech erased the two-run deficit in the fourth on Kelsey Hoffman's two-RBI double to right-center field. The Hokies then took its first lead of the game, 6-5, on Caroline Stolle's RBI squeeze bunt. Tech added five more runs in the inning to take the commanding 11-5 lead after four complete innings.

Tech added another run in the six inning to take the decisive 12-5 lead. In the top of the seventh inning, the game was called due to darkness.

Virginia Tech 12, Marshall 5 (Mar 22, 2006 at Blacksburg, Va.) (Game 2)
Marshall............ 302 000  -  5  4  2      (16-14)
Virginia Tech....... 102 801  - 12 12  3      (21-9)
Pitchers: Marshall - Abigail Harter; Veronica Ralston(4); Amanda Luers(6).
Virginia Tech - Karie Morrison; Angela Tincher(1).
Win-Angela Tincher(12-2)  Loss-Abigail Harter(6-7)  T-2:14  A-203