PEMBROKE – In a doubleheader with Chowan University on Saturday afternoon UNCP amassed 26 runs in the two-game set to surge past the visiting Hawks improving to 8-3 on the year thanks to an 11-4 win in game one and a 15-2 dismantling in game two in non-conference action at LRA Softball Field.
Shortstop Holly Berry drove in seven of UNCP's runs on the day with teammate Courtney Hill adding six to the Braves' total. Second baseman Jamie Burwell picked up three RBI while Loren Bartz and Jelena Shaw drove in two apiece to help the Pembroke cause.
Chowan (3-7) got a pair of RBI from first baseman Tricia Gorman who went 3-for-5 at the plate with walk. The Hawks' Allie Kolezynski (0-2) was credited with the loss in game one giving up six runs on four hits in two innings of work. Christie Wright pitched the final four innings allowing five runs (none earned) on four hits. Jessica Farmer (2-3) took the game two loss allowing 12 runs (four earned) on seven hits in one-and-a-thirds innings of work.
For the Braves Caroline Newman earned the game one victory giving up four runs (two earned) on six hits while striking out four batters and walking two in seven innings of work. Freshman Alex Hartshorn earned her first collegiate victory in game two allowing two runs (both unearned) on one hit with five K's in five innings. The rookie hurler took a no-hitter into the fifth inning only to have Gorman wreck it in the final frame.
The Black & Gold will next be in action on Wednesday at 3 p.m. in a single game with St. Andrews of the Knights. Chowan will host Shepherd College next Saturday in a two-game set beginning at noon at Hawks Field.
Burwell began Braves' rally in the bottom of the first doubling down the leftfield line to lead off the frame for UNCP. After a Kellie Van Dyke sacrifice bunt to move her to third Hill laid down a suicide squeeze to plate Burwell from third and give Pembroke a 1-0 lead.
With a runner on second Berry launched the first home run of her career to put UNCP by three after one inning of play.
Chowan answered in the top of the second scoring a run on a Kaytee McLaughlin single and another on a Brooke Owen liner up the middle to cut the UNCP lead to 3-2.
The Braves posted three more runs in the bottom of the second as Hill doubled to left with the bases loaded to push Pembroke's lead out to four runs. UNCP then scored five runs in the bottom of the third highlighted by a Shaw triple to left-center to take a commanding 11-2 lead into the fourth.
Chowan would score on a pair of UNCP errors to cut Pembroke's lead to seven in the fourth but would be unable to plate any more runners the rest of the way allowing the Braves to take game one of the twin bill 11-4.
Pembroke scored early and often in game two posting six runs in the bottom of the first as a pair of Chowan errors allowed the Black & Gold to bat around the lineup to take a commanding 6-0 lead heading into the second.
The Braves batted around the lineup once again in the second plating nine runners in the frame to go up 15-0 after two. Berry drove in two runs on a double to center then another two on a triple down the rightfield line and Burwell clocked a three-run homer to give UNCP an insurmountable lead.
Hartshorn forced two ground outs in the top of the fifth before committing a fielding error to give Chowan a base-runner. After a pair of walks to load the bases Gorman ended the no-no for the freshman with a double to left-centerfield as Chowan avoided the shutout. The Braves would record the final out one batter later to preserve the one-hitter for Hartshorn.
The one-hitter for Hartshorn is the fourth of the season for the Braves' pitching staff, with Newman tossing the other three. Pembroke is now 6-1 at home this year.