Copyright 2016; Wilmington University. All rights reserved. Photo of Colby Wyatt rounding third on her walk-off home run, taken by Joseph Craig.
NEW CASTLE, Del. - - The long ball propelled the Wilmington University softball team to their ninth and 10th straight victory, sweeping Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference foe USciences, 7-1 and 8-0, on Thursday afternoon at Asbury Field.
The Wildcats (16-12, 11-1) hit three homers in the doubleheader, including a three-run walk-off blast in the bottom of the sixth inning in the nightcap. The 11-1 mark in the CACC ties the best 12-game start in program history, as the 2008 also went 11-1 to start the conference slate.
Meghan Brown started the long ball spree in the bottom of the fifth inning of the first game, blasting a three-run shot to left field to break the game open, 7-1. The Devils (8-19, 6-8 CACC) cut the deficit to 2-1 in the top of the fourth, but the Wildcats responded with two runs in the home half of the fifth before Brown's bomb opened the margin.
Starter Danielle Bradley found herself in trouble in the top of the fourth, as a leadoff single and a double put the first two runners on second and third. Bradley picked up a key strikeout, but the Devils got on the board with a sacrifice fly to left. Bradley minimized the damage with a grounder to third to end the frame.
The Wildcats came back two runs in the home half of the fourth, all with two outs and no runners on. Bradley started the rally with an infield single before an error put runners on first and third. Becca Stanley then singled into the gap in right center, scoring both Bradley and Jazmeen Llamas to give the Wildcats a 4-1 lead.
Brown gave the Wildcats breathing room in the fifth, as Shannon Brantley and Kaitlyn Slater reached with one out. Brown's first homer of the season was a no doubter to left. Bradley took care of the rest for the Wildcats, as she set the Devils down in order in the sixth and striking out the side in the seventh for her fifth win of the season.
Slater got in on the home run parade in the second inning of game two, sending one to dead center to put the Wildcats ahead, 2-0. Brown singled to keep the inning going before Colby Wyatt singled her home for the 3-0 lead. Stanley capped the scoring in the inning with a sacrifice fly to right, bringing in Wyatt.
Game two starter Caitlyn Whiteside needed to get out of a two-out, two-on jam in the fourth before only allowing one more runner the rest of the game.
Bradley started the sixth inning with a double inside the line in left and Brantley followed her up with a single up the middle for another RBI. Now with one out and runners on second and third, Wyatt sent her second homer of the season over the wall in left center, ending the game, 8-0.
Whiteside picked up her fifth win of the season with her second complete game shutout, striking out five batters while only allowing three walks. Brantley and Wyatt picked up two hits each in the nightcap, with Wyatt contributing four RBI.
Bradley finished with four hits on the afternoon, while Brantley and Brown added three hits apiece. Bradley struck out six batters in the complete game victory in game one.
The Wildcats take to the road for their next six doubleheaders, beginning with CACC rival Dominican on Saturday. The first pitch in Orangeburg, New York is set for 12 p.m. on Saturday afternoon.