CHARLOTTE. N.C. – The Charlotte softball team had a dominating performance in its 12-3 victory over Rhode Island in an Atlantic 10 contest, Saturday afternoon at D.L. Phillips Complex.
The Rams (9-21 overall, 2-7 A-10) jumped to a quick 2-0 lead in the first inning but Charlotte (16-20, 4-6) responded by taking the 3-2 advantage after the first and never looked back.
The second inning is where the 49ers did their damage. The Niners took advantage of four walks and used five hits to extend their lead to 10-2. With one out, Natalie Capone reached on a walk. Capone then stole second and moved to third after Alex Rogers singled to centerfield. The Rams would retire the next batter but allowed Chelsea Ingersoll to reach on a walk. With bases loaded, Rhode Island walked Lindsey Holloman to give Charlotte the 4-2 advantage. The Rams made a pitching change but Rogers scored on a passed ball to keep Charlotte’s momentum alive. Samantha Slade also drew a walk but it was Jessica Plemmons’ that cleared a few bases with a hit to centerfield to drive in a pair of runs. Kalie Lang drove in a run off a hit to right field followed by Chelsea Stamey’s RBI-single to left field. Capone who got the inning started for the 49ers was back up again but this time she belted a double to left field that tallied another run and pushed the score to 10-2.
Briana Gwaltney led-off the third inning with a solo home run, her sixth of the season, to extend the Niners’ lead to 11-2.
Courtney Carroll entered the game in the fourth inning to pinch hit with two outs. Carroll hit her second double of the season to centerfield and then stole third. Capone’s RBI-single to centerfield drove in Carroll.
Rhode Island didn’t go away too easily and scored a run off two hits to cut Charlotte’s lead to 12-3 in the fifth. However the Niners closed out the game allowing the Rams to record just four hits, courtesy of a great performance from Cheslea Lisikatos in the circle. Lisikatos (6-7) finished with three strikeouts.
Offensively, Charlotte was led by Plemmons who was 2-for-3 with a game-high three RBIs. Capone also finished with two hits, two RBIs, and a run.
The Niners will wrap-up the weekend by hosting Massachusetts in a A-10 doubleheader on Sunday, April 14 beginning at noon.