Softball Shuts Out the Competition on Day One of the Charger Chillout
February 17, 2012
Written By: Michael Brown, Assistant A.D. for Communications
DECATUR, Ala.- Sailfish junior right-hander Mary Pippin appeared right at home on Friday afternoon as she tossed a pair of complete-game shutouts for the Palm Beach Atlantic University softball team as the Sailfish took down a pair of opponents at the Charger Chillout Tournament, hosted by the University of Alabama-Huntsville. Pippin returned to the state of Alabama after playing her junior college ball at Southern Alabama Community College.
The Sailfish (10-5) completed their first win over Quincy University by clobbering the Hawks for an 8-0 win in five innings in the early afternoon. They would then come back later in the day and score early as they plated all three of their runs in the bottom of the first inning as they held off a late rally attempt by Bellarmine University in a 3-0 victory.
Pippin combined to post 12 shutout innings between the two games inside the pitching circle while allowing only a total of six hits and collecting 18 strikeouts in the process.
Both games of Friday’s opening-day tournament action were played at a soggy but well maintained Wilson Morgan Park while both games saw the Fish execute their game plan to get an early lead.
Junior Kara Anderson began their opener with Quincy by legging out a bunt single then moved to second-base on a Miranda Welch sacrifice bunt. Senior Mari Stokes then stepped in and delivered a sharp single to plate Anderson for the 1-0 PBA lead.
It wouldn’t be until the fifth inning that the game would feature more scoring as PBA exploded for seven runs as Lisa Santos sprinted home for the final run on a wild pitch to secure the 8-0 lead. Pippin did her part in the bottom of the inning by retiring the side in order to preserve the five-inning mercy rule victory.
The big fifth frame for PBA featured a number of big hits. Kimberly Traxler started the inning with a leadoff single followed by another single from Anderson while both moved up a base on a bad Quincy throw.
After an out was recorded, Stokes produced a sacrifice fly to plate Anderson and post the second out of the inning. However the Fish were just getting started.
Over the next several batters the team would witness five straight singles while some wildness by the Quincy pitcher allowed two more runs to scamper home on wild pitches.
Anderson finished 2-for-3 atop the PBA lineup while Stokes and Walters each chipped in a two-hit game as well. Santos and Traxler carried the bottom of the order with a pair of hits each as the Fish managed 13 hits as a team including at least one by eight of the nine starters.
With the temperatures dropping slightly as the sun sank in the Alabama sky, the Fish and head coach Kimmy Bloemers opted to ride the strong arm of Pippin for a second game following the shortened outing in game one.
Palm Beach Atlantic jumped all over Bellarmine with the big three-run first inning highlighted by a two-run double by Walters and a run-scoring single by sophomore Brianna Parker.
The good work done by the PBA offense left Pippin in full control with plenty of confidence as the Bonifay, Florida native allowed only four hits through seven innings while posting 10 strikeouts in the game.
The only serious threat from BU came in the top of the seventh as they put runners on the corners with two outs. Pippin however shined when it mattered most as she got the final hitter to ground out to third-baseman Mackenzie Johnson to close out the 3-0 win.
PBA produced eight hits in the contest versus Bellarmine with Walters going 2-for-3 and Stokes reaching base twice on a single and hit-by-pitch.
With rain in the forecast for Saturday’s slate of games, the entire tournament schedule has been moved up two hours. The Fish will now take on Kentucky Wesleyan College at 8:30 am (CST) and the University of Alabama-Huntsville at 10:30 am.