LAKEWOOD, N.J. - - Six home runs highlighted the Wilmington University softball team's Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference sweep at Georgian Court, 12-3 (5 inn.) and 11-3 (6 inn.), on Thursday at SEI Investments Field.
Makayla McCarthy struck out 10 batters while hitting one of the Wildcats' (32-14, 18-4 CACC) two home runs in the opener. Lauren Lopez hit a grand slam while the Wildcats hit four home runs in the nightcap, winning both games by the eight-run rule.
It didn't take long for the Wildcats to get on the board in the opener, as Makayla McCarthy gave herself a lead with a two-run homer in the top of the first. Jordyn Virden struck in the top of the second inning, hitting another two-run shot for her first collegiate home run and the 4-0 lead.
But the Lions (26-21, 16-8 CACC) answered back with the CACC leader in batting average, homers, and RBI Samantha Reilly launching her 20th home run of the season to bring the home team to within 4-3 in the third.
A seven-run fourth inning separated the Wildcats in the opener, as the Wildcats loaded the bases with no outs in the inning. Jazmeen Llamas started the scoring with a two-run single before Lauren Lopez hit an RBI double. An error allowed another run to score before Mirabella Klebart worked a bases loaded walk for the 10-3 lead. A wild pitch capped the fourth inning scoring for the Wildcats, 11-3.
McCarthy finished off her offensive game with a sacrifice fly in the top of the fifth inning, but needed to go back out to the circle to finish off the victory. She shut the Lions down in order in the fifth, securing the 12-3 victory.
McCarthy improved to 15-8 on the year with the five-inning complete game shutout, allowing three runs on two hits while striking out 10 and walking two. Rosa'Lynn Burton and Lauren Lopez each went 2-for-4 with McCarthy leading the way with three RBI.
The long balls continued for the Wildcats into the nightcap, as another two-run shot in the top of the first gave the Wildcats a quick lead. This time it was Alyssa Velasquez who hit the two-run bomb for the early 2-0 lead.
The Lions tied the game with a first and third play and an error in the bottom of the first, but the offenses stalled for the next three innings.
The Wildcats gave game two starter Caitlyn Whiteside the lead in the top of the fifth inning, scoring five runs on five hits. Llamas, Burton, and Velasquez all singled to start the frame, and Lauren Lopez brought them all home with one swing of the bat, launching a grand slam to center for the 6-1 lead. The Wildcats loaded the bases again in the inning, scoring on a wild pitch to lead 7-1.
After Whiteside set the Lions down in order in the bottom of the fifth, the Wildcats were at it again in the to of the sixth. Rosa'Lynn Burton led off the inning with a solo homer to right center, her third of the season. Three batters later, Makayla McCarthy stepped in and launched her second homer of the day, a two-run shot for the 10-1 lead. Later in the inning with the bases loaded, Jazmeen Llamas worked a walk to bring in another, ending the scoring for the Wildcats, 11-1.
Whiteside improved to 16-6 with the win, striking out four while allowing three runs (one earned) on three hits with two walks. Velasquez went 3-for-3 with two RBI and three runs scored while Burton went 2-for-3 with three runs scored and Makayla McCarthy went 2-for-3 with two RBI.
The Wildcats will host Post on Saturday for their final weekend home game. They will celebrate the career of their lone senior, Keara McCarthy, prior to the doubleheader at Asbury Field starting at 12:00 p.m.