Coastal Georgia’s softball team found a lot of success against two stout teams as they wrapped up the week by splitting games with No. 10 Georgia Gwinnett on Thursday afternoon.
The Mariners also got a big sweep over Divison II team Savannah State on Wednesday as they won 7-3 in Game 1 and 10-1 in Game 2.
Game 1 was a close one between the Grizzlies and Mariners, as Georgia Gwinnett took it 3-2. Coastal Georgia had a shot with the tying and winning run on base in the bottom of the seventh inning but couldn’t find a way to score, as their comeback fell short.
The Mariners didn’t give up after Game 1 as they came into Game 2 bats swinging. Coastal Georgia and Georgia Gwinnett remained scoreless through the first two innings, and then the Mariners found the light.
Coastal Georgia went on to win 6-4 as they held off the Grizzlies from making a comeback.
“I’m very proud of our team — that’s the No. 10 team in the country,” said Coastal Georgia coach Mike Minnick. “They’ve been in the World Series the last two years. We split with them in February, and we came here today hoping for a sweep, but we lost that close game in the first game. Then we battled and got a big lead and held on at the end of the second game — we knew that team wasn’t going to quit. It was a big win for us.”
Starting pitcher Hayley Dickerson got things going for the Mariners in the third inning as she hit a single. Melani Jones followed up with a single of her own to put two runners on base. Malarie Peacock hit a sacrifice bunt to advance everyone.
Freshman Sarah Thinger made her first big play of the game as she hit a single to score Dickerson.
Coastal added two more runs in the fourth inning as Kayla Rowell stepped up to the plate and bombed one over the fence to make it 2-0. Then Jones followed it up by hitting a double to score Lindsey Thomas and make it 3-0.
Georgia Gwinnett added a run in the top of the fifth, but the Mariners responded with one, maintaining a three-run lead.
Coastal added on their last two runs in the sixth inning as Cevana Wood hit a single that allowed Rori Rhodes and Thomas to score, making it 6-1. The Grizzlies added on three runs in the top of the seventh, including a two-run homer, but it was Thinger who bobbled a ball and got the final out to save the win at 6-4.
“I love the way they’re fighting and playing hard,” Minick said. “We’re playing hard. We’re swinging the bats good, and the pitchers have really started locking in, so we got a good team right now.”
Dickerson fought hard on the mound in Game 2 as she pitched all seven innings, allowing four runs on six hits while striking out seven batters and walking three.
“She sailed until the last inning, then she got all that adversity — we thought about maybe taking her out, but we were like ‘No, she’s pitched too good’,” Minick said. “She is tough in those situations, and she stayed in there and got the out. That was great.”
Coastal Georgia improves to 16-6 on the season and will travel to No. 23 Southeastern University on April 7 for their next doubleheader.