Diamond Hawks top UNCG; UNCW softball takes series finale

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UNCW’s Ricky Holden and William Shepley combined for 7.1 shutout innings of relief as the Seahawks topped UNC-Greensboro 5-2 Wednesday at Brooks Field.

Will Shepley recorded his second career save in UNCW's win over UNC-G. Photo by-UNCW athletics
Will Shepley recorded his second career save in UNCW’s win over UNC-G. Photo by UNCW Athletics.

Holden (2-0) earned the win and Shepley notched the save, combining to allow just four hits and two walks, while striking out eight. Holden finished with a career-high six strikeouts.

UNC-G scored twice in the top of the first, but UNCW answered with a run in the bottom of the frame and took the lead in the second with two runs.

In the second inning, Josh Abshire and Casey Golden both beat out potential inning-ending double play ball to score runs.

Corey Dick extended his hitting streak to a career-long tying 11 games, while the Seahawks played a strong defensive game and turned a season-high three double plays. 

The Seahawks improved to 7-8 with the non-conference win, which also halted a brief two-game losing skid. UNCW entertains Indiana State team in a three-game series beginning Friday, with a 4 p.m. start at Brooks Field. ISU has won its last 12 games following a season-opening loss at Auburn.

UNCW softball takes series finale from Youngstown State

Junior southpaw Casey Rowland turned in a strong pitching performance and UNCW capitalized on four Youngstown State errors to post a 7-1 non-conference decision over the Penguins Wednesday at Boseman Field.

Nella Chamblee and the Lady Seahawks continue their 18-game homestand on Saturday. Photo by: UNCW athletics
Nella Chamblee and the Lady Seahawks continue their 18-game homestand on Saturday. Photo by UNCW Athletics.

Playing in gusty conditions, the Seahawks avenged a pair of one-run losses to YSU on Tuesday and improved to 12-10 on the season. Rowland (6-4) scattered four hits over 5.2 innings and allowed just one unearned run, while senior outfielder Brittany Gamby and junior second baseman Jessica Rappe had two hits apiece to anchor UNCW’s seven-hit attack.

After two innings of scoreless play, the Seahawks broke through with three runs on two hits, wrapped around an error after Gamby led off the frame with a double into the leftfield corner.

Merritt Wilkinson’s bunt moved her over and the senior scored on Casey Shue’s textbook squeeze play. Shue and Rappe later scored on an throw error.

UNCW tacked on another run in the bottom of the fourth when freshman shortstop Lauren Moore reached on a one-out single, advanced to second on a passed ball and raced home on a throwing error by YSU reliever Chancy Williams.

The run support was more than enough for Rowland and sophomore Kayla Price, who threw 2.1 innings of scoreless relief out of the bullpen.

The Seahawks, now 6-3 on their 18-game homestand, play again Saturday when Presbyterian visits for a doubleheader, beginning at 2 p.m.