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Hokies Win 2 of 3 Against Maryland In Emotional Weekend Series

by Brittney Asbury
Sports Writer
April 23, 2007

The Virginia Tech softball team took the field this weekend for the first time after Monday’s tragedy, and gave many Hokie fans something to cheer about.

The Hokies took on Maryland in a doubleheader on Saturday. The first game started with an emotional pre-game ceremony in which Maryland players presented the Hokies with a gift, followed by a moment of silence and then the powerful words of Nikki Giovanni’s “We Are Virginia Tech” speech.

Tech took the field in front of a loud, supportive crowd of 1,283. The Hokies got off to an early lead when both Callie Rhodes and Erin Ota walked and then Caroline Stolle doubled to right field, scoring both Rhodes and Ota.

Kelsey Hoffman then drove in Stolle with a nicely executed squeeze play. Charisse Mariconda then singled up the middle to score Stephanie Savre. Hoffman eventually scored off of a Whitney Davis single to make the score 5-0.

Staring pitcher Angela Tincher worked wonderfully with the 5-0 cushion and was taken out in the fifth inning to save her arm. Heather Lowry went in and got through the sixth just fine, but started to have trouble in the seventh, giving up four runs. Head coach Scott Thomas made the decision to put Tincher back in to finish the game and the Hokies went on to win 5-4.

In the second game it was Maryland that got out to an early lead when Amber Jackson sent Tincher’s pitch flying over the centerfield fence.

The Hokies responded in the bottom of the first when they batted through the lineup to score eight runs off of six hits.

The score stayed 8-1 until the third inning when Kelsy Rokey launched a solo homerun to left field. Rokey then struck again, this time hitting a two run homerun, making the score 11-1.

Tincher held the Terrapins off for another two innings, allowing Tech to win by the eight run mercy rule in the fifth. Tincher allowed just one run, two walks and struck out eight.

With two wins under their belts, the Hokies were looking for win number three on Sunday.

Despite pitching all but one of the 13 innings on Saturday, Tincher got the start in the third game on Sunday.

This time it was Maryland that got out to an early lead, scoring three runs off of a shaky-looking Tincher in the first. The Terps then went on to score another run in the third off of a wild pitch, making the score 4-0.

The Hokies answered in the bottom of the fourth when Stolle drove in Rhodes off of a single to center. Savre then hit a two-run homerun, making the score 3-4. Hoffman then singled and eventually scored off of a Mariconda double to second.

The score stayed tied at four until the top of the fifth, when Maryland put another run on the board.

Tech tried to rally in the bottom of the seventh and came close. With two runners on base, Stolle fouled several pitches off past the left field fence, but ended up popping out to second to end the game 5-4.

The Hokies will be back in action for an out-of-conference doubleheader against Furman on Wednesday at Tech Softball Park. The first pitch is set for 3 p.m.