AUBURN, Ala. -- A day of hot bats coupled with strong defense led the 12th-ranked Auburn softball to victory in Saturday's doubleheader sweep over Western Carolina and Western Illinois (6-12) on day two of the Wilson/DeMarini Classic at Jane B. Moore Field. Auburn improved to 21-2 on the season.
The Tigers took on Western Carolina (4-10) in the first game of the day. Defense reigned supreme in the contest as the Tigers defeated the Catamounts 5-0, only allowing four hits in the game. It is the 15th shutout of the season for the Mickey Dean-led Tigers.
Auburn's pitching staff once again showed its strength and depth as junior Makayla Martin started the contest without allowing a single hit in the three innings that she pitched. The right-hander from San Diego, Calif. faced the minimum over those 3.0 innings, striking out five before being relieved in favor of Ashlee Swindle (1-0).
Swindle, a sophomore from Jasper, Ala., pitched 3.0 innings and struck out two Catamount batters to earn her first win of the season.
Kara Bilodeau, a freshman from Cumming, Ga., pitched the last inning of the contest, striking out two of the four batters she faced to close out the game.
Catamount pitcher Lily Hayes (0-4) was charged with the loss after giving up all five of the Tigers' runs on six hits. Hayes also walked eight batters.
Auburn once again started hot offensively, scoring three runs in the second inning on a pair of homeruns. One run came courtesy a solo shot from senior Courtney Shea, who led the team with two hits, and Kendall Veach plated the others on a 2-run bomb to left field.
The second game of the day showed another consistent defensive performance, but even hotter offense from the Tigers as they rattled off 11 hits to defeat Western Illinois (6-12) by a final of 6-2.
Victoria Draper headlined the game, continuing her dominant play from the plate for the Tigers. The redshirt senior batted a perfect 3-for-3 with one RBI and two runs scored. Draper has proved to be a key part of the Tigers' offense, batting an astronomical .536 with an on-base percentage of .662. The center fielder from Moulton, Ala. is also the nation's leader in stolen bases with 25 after adding three more in today's contests.
Also key for the Tiger offense in game two were KK Crocker and Taylon Snow. Crocker, a sophomore from Tuscaloosa, Ala., went 2-for-4 with two runs scored bringing her season average to .333 while Snow batted 1-for-2 with two RBI and a run scored.
Auburn senior Kaylee Carlson (10-0) pitched a complete game against the Leathernecks, only allowing two runs, one earned, on seven hits. The right-hander from Garden Grove, Calif. also walked just one batter and struck out three more in her 10th win of the season.
Charged with the loss for the Leathernecks was junior pitcher Emily Ira, who pitched 6.0 innings and allowed all of Auburn's six runs on 11 hits.
The Tigers will wrap-up the Wilson/DeMarini Classic on Sunday afternoon with another doubleheader facing Western Illinois at 11 a.m. CT and UNCW at 1:30 p.m. CT.