The Elon University softball team swept all three games this weekend against the University of South Carolina Upstate and Radford University. The third game on Sunday, Feb. 8 was against Radford, which the Phoenix defeated the night before and repeated Sunday afternoon.
Freshman Kiandra Mitchum started the game for her second appearance of the weekend. After giving up a hit on the very first pitch of the game, Mitchum settled down. Mitchum threw five innings, only allowing four hits and a walk to the 21 batters she faced.
“I wasn’t as nervous today," Mitchum said. "I just thought about getting outs and not letting on base runners."
From the first inning, Elon looked confident out on the field. Mitchum got the Phoenix up at the plate without giving up any runs in the first, and they took advantage. Freshman infielder Hannah Olson led off for Elon with a walk and was driven in on an RBI double from freshman outfielder Kara Shutt. Junior third baseman Emily Cameron didn’t leave Shutt on base too long before she drove her in and put the Phoenix up 2-0.
Shutt had a good day at the plate. She was one for two with two runs batted in in the game. Coming off her walk-off hit on Feb. 7 against Radford, she felt confident at the plate and it showed in her performance.
“I just want to put the ball in play,” Shutt said in response to her approach at the plate.
Through the next few innings Mitchum would only allow one run to cross the plate for Radford and the Elon offense rallied. In the bottom of the fourth, Radford errors allowed three runs to cross the plate, increasing the Phoenix lead to 6-1.
Going into the top of the sixth, junior Kayla Caruso (who received the win against Radford Feb. 7) came in to relive Mitchum. Caruso set the Highlanders down in order in the sixth and would not allow a run to score for the rest of the game. Elon defeated Radford, 6-1.
“We want to ride off this and feel good about it," head coach Kathy Bocock said. "We have a day off tomorrow but then it’s back to work.”
The win puts Elon at 3-0 on the season, but the team will be tested once again next weekend. It heads down to the Georgia Softball Classic on Feb. 13 where it will take on Troy University in the first round of the tournament.