April 30, 2011
Auburn, Ala. -
Auburn softball's Kelley Smiley drove in two runs and pitcher Lauren Schmalz threw a complete-game scattering five hits as the 25th-ranked Tigers defeated No. 4 Georgia 3-1 Saturday afternoon to even the series at a win apiece.
The Tigers improved to 35-15 overall and 12-12 in the Southeastern Conference, while Georgia dropped to 42-8 overall and 15-7 in the SEC. Auburn and Georgia conclude the series at 1 p.m. Sunday at Jane B. Moore Field.
"This was a very good win for our team today," Auburn head coach Tina Deese said. "The players went all-out and never let up. I thought the same thing last night, but we just couldn't get a few hits to drop. But we came out and jumped on top early today. Lauren did a great job holding their three-four-five batters without a hit. She kept the ball in the strike zone and did a good job hitting her spots."
The win snapped a seven game losing streak to the Bulldogs and gave the Tigers their first win over top-five team since 2006 in a 4-2 victory over No. 4 Alabama. The win was Auburn's third over a top 25 team this season.
Schmalz improved to 14-5 with the win. Schmalz allowed one run, earned, on five hits with two walks and six strikeouts. The win was the second this season over a ranked team for Schmalz, who earned the win against No. 11 Tennessee on April 2.
Sara McCloud started and took the loss for Georgia to fall to 4-2. McCloud allowed three runs, all unearned, on three hits in two-thirds of an inning. Erin Arevalo relieved McCloud in the first inning and pitched the final five and one-third innings, scattering three hits while walking one and striking out four.
For the second consecutive day, Amber Harrison drove in the Tigers' first run of the game in the first inning. With the bases loaded and one out, Harrison's ground out to short scored Lauren Guzman (single) from third for a 1-0 AU lead. With Kelsey Cartwright (single) at third and Kyndall White (fielder's choice) at second after Harrison's ground out, Kelley Smiley laced a single back up the middle to score both runners and give the Tigers a 3-0 lead.
The Bulldogs got on the scoreboard in the top of the third inning on a one-out, solo home run from Megan Wiggins. It was Wiggins' 11th home run of the season and it came on a 3-1 pitch from Schmalz.
The Bulldogs never threatened after the solo homer, however, as Schmalz allowed just two hits over the final four innings of play. Schmalz retired the side in order in the sixth and seventh innings.
Schmalz allowed just one leadoff hitter to reach in the game, with that coming on a single by Kristyn Sandberg to open the second inning.