Returning home for the first time since Feb. 10, the Southern Miss softball team earned an 11-0 run-rule win over Southern University on Wednesday night. With the win, Southern Miss improved to 9-5 on the season.
Senior Sarah Van Schaik kicked things off for the Golden Eagles in the scoring department in the bottom of the first inning with an RBI single to center field that allowed fellow senior Chase Nelson to score from third base.
The Golden Eagles added another run in the bottom of the second inning when sophomore Destini Brown scored off of a sacrifice ground out from freshman Kaitlyn Passeau.
Brown extended the team’s lead once again with a two-run home run in the bottom of the third inning, giving Southern Miss a 4-0 lead over Southern.
In the bottom of the fourth inning, Southern Miss found a surge of offensive production. The Golden Eagles totaled seven runs in the inning, and freshman Madison Rayner, sophomore Alyssa Davis, redshirt sophomore Heather Hill, Nelson and Van Schaik all recorded a hit in the inning to extend the lead to 11-0.
Junior pitcher Bailie Springfield retired the side in the top of the fifth inning to finish the run-rule win and come away with the win.
Springfield allowed three hits and struck out two batters on 61 pitches. Springfield now sports a 3-0 win-loss record on the season.
“She’s unscathed on the season and she’s been working on some new pitches,” Southern Miss head coach Wendy Hogue said. “That’s why we wanted to throw her tonight and see what those pitches looked like going into the weekend.”
Offensively, Van Schaik was 3-for-3 at the plate on the night with three RBIs. Rayner and sophomore Karley Nichols were both 2-for-2 in their plate appearances. Southern Miss finished with 12 hits on the night and also took advantage of three errors by Southern.
Now, Southern Miss will hit the road again to participate in the Easton Crimson Classic in Tuscaloosa, Alabama from March 1-3. The Golden Eagles will face Saint Francis, Alabama and Michigan State over the course of the weekend.
“We’re playing Saint Francis, that’s Abby’s [Trahan] former team, excited about two games versus them,” Hogue said. “There’s always intensity any time you go into a road stadium and play Alabama. Just excited to have one more weekend of five games to prepare us for Conference USA [play].”