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BLACKSBURG (hokiesports.com) - Kat Banks’ two-RBI single in the bottom of the seventh inning helped lift the Virginia Tech softball team to a sweep of UNCG Tuesday night at Tech Softball Park as the Hokies won 8-1 and 10-9 to improve to 21-8 on the year.
In the opener, the Spartans scored a quick run in the first inning, but the Hokies would roll the rest of the way. In the third inning, Amanda Ake singled in a pair of runs and then Dani Anderson drove in Banks to make it 3-1. In the fifth inning, Bkaye Smith singled to plate Ake and then Banks cleared the bases with a three-RBI double to the gap to make it 7-1. Jessica McNamara drove in Banks with a sac fly to cap the scoring.
The second game was a wild affair as the two teams combined for 19 runs and 22 hits. Once again, UNCG scored first, but the Hokies responded once again. Logan Spaw drove in McGoldrick and then Liddle and Spaw executed a double first-and-third steal to give Tech a lead. In the second, McGoldrick grounded out to plated Betty Rose and then Spaw’s ground out drove in Smith.
UNCG’s Katelyn Bedwell hit a three-run home run in the third inning to tie it up and then the Spartans took the lead in the fourth on an infield single. The Hokies scored three runs in the fourth to take a 7-5 lead. Banks drew a bases-loaded walk and then Ake singled to right field to drive in two more runs.
In the fifth, Bedwell struck again, this time with a two-run home run to tie it up at 7, but Spaw’s RBI ground out in the bottom of the fifth drove in Smith to give Tech the lead once again. In the sixth inning, the Spartans plated two more runs to take a 9-8 lead. That’s the way it stood until a dramatic seventh inning.
McGoldrick and Liddle drew walks and then Spaw put down a sacrifice bunt to try and move them, but the throw to third was late, loading the bases with no one out. Banks stepped up and drilled an 0-1 pitch into left field to drive in McGoldrick and Liddle to win the game in walk-off fashion.
Smith led the way with three hits while McGoldrick, Liddle, Banks, Ake and Bailey Liddle each had one. Spaw and Banks each had three RBIs while Courtney Liddle drew three more walks and scored three runs. In total, the Tech batters drew 11 walks from UNCG pitcher Raeanne Hanks and struck out just once.
UNCG’s batters hit the Tech staff hard in game two, picking up 14 hits, but Tech’s offense helped out to ease the burden. Kelly Heinz got the start, but didn’t factor into the decision. She went 4.0 innings, allowing five runs on eight hits with eight strikeouts. Harrell (W, 9-4) went 3.0 innings, giving up four runs on six hits with a strikeout.
Tech will be back in action this weekend, hosting Georgia Tech in a three-game ACC series. The two will play the doubleheader on Saturday starting at noon and will then play the single game on Sunday at 1 p.m. Sunday’s game will be broadcast live and for free online by the ACC Digital Network on YouTube.
For updates on Virginia Tech softball, follow the Hokies on Twitter (@VT_Softball).