Sixth Inning Lifts Nicholls State to 1-0 Victory over Islanders

THIBODAUX, La. – The Texas A&M - Corpus Christi softball team outhit Nicholls State 5-3 but a RBI sacrifice fly in the sixth was enough to lift the Colonels to a 1-0 victory over the Islanders Friday at Colonels Softball Complex.

Senior Greta Cecchetti pitched an outstanding game for the Islanders, tying a career-high 11 strikeouts in six innings. Cassie Redman and Meagan McKinney led the Islanders' bats going 2-for-3 and Laura Phillips chipped in one hit.

With the loss, the Islanders (16-21, 10-9 SLC) dropped its fifth consecutive Southland Conference game, while Nicholls State (14-30, 8-11 SLC) snapped a three-game losing streak.

The two teams remained scoreless through five complete innings of play until Nicholls State plated one run in the bottom of the sixth. The Colonels put runners on the corners after a walk and a single through the left field. With one out, Leah Andrus's RBI sacrifice fly scored Ashley Ray and propelled the Colonels to victory.

In the top of the seventh, the Islanders left the tying run on third. McKinney started the inning with a single through the right side and Stephanie Vead advanced her to second with a sacrifice bunt. After Jamise Jackson grounded out to third, McKinney was in scoring position with two outs. However, the Colonels ended the inning and the game with a ground out.

McKinney recorded the Islanders first hit of the game in the bottom of the first with a single through the right side. She registered her third stolen base of the season, but was left stranded after the Colonels executed with a strikeout and ground out.

Nicholls State tallied a hit in the second with a single to shortstop. Cecchetti retired the next six in the second and third frames combined. The senior pulled out of a huge jam in the bottom of the fourth. After walking back-to-back batters and hitting the next batter to load the bases, she answered by retiring the next three, including two strikeouts, to escape the jam. The Colonels collected their second hit of the game in the bottom of the fifth with a bunt single with two outs before Cecchetti ended the inning with her 10th strikeout of the game.

The Islanders left two stranded in the third and fourth frames. In the top of the third, Redman reached base with a bunt in front of home plate and registered her 11th stolen base of the season. In the top of the fourth, Sandy Schumann reached first on an error by the Colonel's shortstop to lead off the inning but was called out stealing second. Phillips followed with a single to right field to record the Islanders second hit of the game. McKinney grounded out to first to advance Heather Harrill, who came in to pinch run for Phillips, to second. However, Nicholls State's hurler Bennett escaped out of the jam.

In the top of the sixth the Islanders left one stranded. Redman started things with a bunt and advanced to third with back-to-back sacrifice hits by Hannah Schwarz and Schumann.

Cecchetti (10-6, 8-2 SLC) limited the Colonels to just three hits, while walking three and striking out 11 of the 25 batters she faced.   

The Islanders will look to bounce back against the Colonels tomorrow at 12 p.m. in the team's final regular season game.

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