No. 2 UAH grabs pair of wins

DECATUR, Ala. — The nation’s second-ranked team moved to 8-0 on the season as the University of Alabama in Huntsville took another pair of contests on Saturday, defeating Palm Beach Atlantic 10-0 and knocking off Southern Indiana 4-1 to earn another sweep at the Charger Chillout.

In the game against Palm Beach Atlantic, both teams wore black ribbons with “8” on them in honor of the late Gary Carter. The MLB Hall of Famer served as PBA’s baseball coach, and his daughter Kimmy Bloemers is the skipper of the softball squad.

After scoring a pair of runs off of a couple of PBA miscues in the top half of the first to take an early 2-0 lead, the Chargers built upon their lead with a couple of blasts.

Kelli Long led the UAH half of the third with a homer to left, and after a Mary Kelley walk, Stephanie Needham homered to one of the deepest parts of the park to register her third long fly of the weekend tournament to put the Chargers up 5-0.

With the Sailfish threatening to get on the board in the fourth, the UAH infielders flashed their leather and turned an impressive inning-ending 5-4-3 double play that was started by third baseman Abby MacKay who was strong all day defensively.

The play was just one of a few that helped Whitney Toler (4-0) earn the shutout victory. The sophomore tossed five innings and gave up just four hits while striking out two.

A five-run fifth for the Chargers created the shortened 10-0 affair.

The second game of the day for UAH was more closely contested.

Cortney McNett began the scoring in the victory with a two-out bomb in the second, but Southern Indiana quickly responded with a run in the bottom frame of the inning to create a 1-1 tie.

The tie was brief, however, as back-to-back jacks in the third propelled the Blue and White to a 4-1 lead. Kelley homered to right to bring in Mallory McNeal, and Needham followed with her second of the day and fourth of the weekend to put the Chargers up by three.

Christina Boczek (3-0) pitched 3.1 innings of relief in the game and earned the victory as she gave up just two hits and did not allow a run while picking up a pair of strikeouts. UAH starter Whitney Gilbert also punched a pair of Southern Indiana batters, but she pitched 3.2 innings and thus did not qualify to factor into the decision despite leaving the game having kept her team ahead.

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