Hawks roll through game two

Published 3:04 pm Thursday, April 16, 2009

MURFREESBORO – Bring on the Regionals.

The Chowan University softball team wrapped up the home portion of their season Tuesday with a doubleheader sweep of North Carolina Wesleyan, winning by scores of 9-1 and 11-0.

The Lady Hawks will now head to Franklin Springs, Georgia for the National Christian College Athletic Association South Regional tournament where they are the top-seed and have received a bye in the first round. The other teams are Emmanuel College and North Greenville University in the double-elimination event.

Following the tournament Chowan will close their regular season on the road at Wingate.

“It’s nice to have that bye,” said second-year coach Mandi Balduf, “because all you have to do is win one and you’re in (the NCCAA nationals). The other team has to beat you twice, so we’re sitting pretty right now.”

“We feel really confident,” adds junior Melissa Woodrum, “we’ve just got to continue with the roll we’re on. As good as our stats are there’s no reason for us to lose.”

The Hawks added to those stats with the sweep as they banged out a dozen hits in the second game. Woodrum and teammates Mindy Bird and Jenna Lassiter were all two-for-two with Lassiter driving in four runs.

Former Edenton Holmes star, sophomore Megan Bass, hit her first home run with a solid shot over the left field fence and freshman Allie Kolezynski collected her thirteenth win of the year in pitching the two-hit shutout.

“We’re playing close to error-less defense as well,” said Lassiter, ” and with our pitching and hitting we’re a very solid team. We’re clicking now and we’re going to be a force to reckon with at the regionals.”

As they did in the first game, Chowan did the most damage in the third inning when they built on a 3-0 lead with a half-dozen more runs to put the game away and make it a short afternoon of work.

With two runners in scoring position, sophomore Brooke Owen’s got the scoring barrage started by driving in Kolezynski with a towering sacrifice fly to center field and a 4-0 mark on the scoreboard.

Woodrum followed with her second double of the game to score pinch-runner Brenna Thomas. Lassiter then sent a hot shot slicing back through the mound and the damp red clay to plate two more runs. She was followed at the plate by Bass who cleared the bases with her home run over the wall to the cheers of the crowd and was then mobbed by her teammates after she stomped emphatically on home plate.

Chowan then picked up two more runs in the fourth to claim their 27th win of the year.

“I can’t say enough about my team,” said the beaming Balduf. “Sure we dropped those two games last weekend (to NCAA Division-II 24th-ranked USC-Aiken) but today shows that it doesn’t matter who you play if you come out swinging the bats good things will happen.”