March 16, 2012
Athens, Ga. - Jenee Loree tossed a one-hit shutout as the 20th-ranked Auburn softball team defeated No. 7 Georgia 2-0 Friday night in the opening game of a three-game series.
Auburn improved to 23-4 overall and 2-1 in the Southeastern Conference. Georgia dropped 21-5 overall and 2-2 in SEC play. The Tigers and Bulldogs play game two of the series at 1:30 p.m. CT Saturday.
"I am really proud of the way Jenee pitched tonight," Auburn head coach Tina Deese said. "Georgia is a good offensive team and to hold them to one hit is just an excellent performance by Jenee. Offensively, we were able to get it done but we are going to have to be more consistent at the plate."
Loree improved to 8-1 with the complete-game win. Loree walked three, struck out five and retired the last nine consecutive batters of the game.
Erin Arevalo took the complete-game loss, falling to 8-2. Arevalo allowed two runs, both unearned, on three hits with one walk and eight strikeouts.
Auburn scored the only runs of the game, pushing two runs across in the top of the first inning. Lauren Guzman was hit by the first pitch of the game and moved to second on a sac bunt. A ground-out moved Guzman to third. Caitlin Jordan drove a ball up the middle that second baseman Ashley Pauly misplayed for an error, allowing Guzman to score for a 1-0 lead. Amber Harrison followed with a single to center that plated Jordan and pushed the Auburn lead to 2-0.
The Tigers loaded the bases with one out in the top of the second inning, but Arevalo forced a ground ball double play off the bat of Brooke Lathan to end the inning without a run scoring.
After the second inning, Arevalo got on a roll and retired 10 consecutive Auburn batters until a one-out walk in the sixth inning broke the string.
For the Tigers, Loree was in control from the start of the game. Loree allowed one hit and two walks in the first two innings, but settled into a groove. Loree retired the side in order in the third and fourth innings, but gave up a leadoff walk in the fifth to break the string, but that would be the last Georgia batter to reach base.
In the bottom of the seventh, Loree fanned Ashley Razey on a swinging strike three for the first out of the inning. On a 1-0 pitch, Loree forced Kristyn Sandberg to line out to Guzman at shortstop for the second out. The game ended when Griffin lined out to Loree on the first pitch of the at-bat.