No. 16 Virginia Tech Softball Handles Georgia Tech 8-4

Cori McMillan hit a sixth-inning home run that put the game on ice for Virginia Tech on Friday against Georgia Tech. (Virginia Tech athletics)

No. 16 Virginia Tech softball handled Georgia Tech in an 8-4 win on Friday, notching its seventh consecutive victory.

“We came out strong, and then I think there was a little bit of a lull, then we picked it back up,” Virginia Tech head coach Pete D’Amour told Tech Sideline after the game. “I hope we play with the same intent that we played with in the first inning tonight [going forward].”

The Hokies (29-18, 15-4 ACC) batted around and scored six runs in the first, ousting Yellow Jackets (29-18, 11-8 ACC) starter Kinsey Norton after just seven batters. During that span, left fielder Addy Greene knocked a two-run homer. Then second baseman Cameron Fagan scored two on a double. Four batters — and a pitching change — later, center fielder Emma Ritter scored two more with a double of her own.

Tech went scoreless for the ensuing five frames, which was fine until the Yellow Jackets began to claw back. They used two singles and a homer in the fourth to cut the Hokies’ deficit to 6-3, then tacked on another in the fifth when first baseman Jayden Gailey hit into an RBI double play.

However, the Hokies added insurance runs when they needed them. With a 6-4 lead, right fielder Cori McMillan blasted a two-run homer in the sixth, adding two runs to their lead and putting the game out of reach.

“Coach Pete just told me to not watch one and just take it yard,” McMillan said. “I was looking for anything in the middle that I could hit.”

McMillan has home runs in each of the last three games, bringing her season total up to 15. Only first baseman Michelle Chatfield (17) has more on the team.

“Coach Pete coming up to me before and telling me to do that tells me that he knows I can,” McMillan said. “I know my teammates also think I can, and that helps a lot.”

Lyndsey Grein didn’t pitch the best game of her career, but she more than held her own. In five innings, she allowed six hits and four runs — three in the fourth and one in the fifth. She allowed just one hit in the first three frames before the Yellow Jackets began to figure her out.

“I still have a lot of room for improvement,” Grein said. “… It’s a good motivator to go work harder, so hopefully I’ll be better tomorrow.”

Emma Mazzarone relieved Grein and earned her first career save. She allowed just one hit and struck out one batter in her two innings.

“Lyndsey was throwing OK,” D’Amour said. “I just wanted to give them a different look.”

Chatfield walked four times, breaking the program record for walks in an ACC game. She entered Friday with 17 home runs this season, second in the conference.

The Hokies worked two double plays — one in the fifth and another in the sixth. The first scored Yellow Jackets third baseman Mallorie Black to chip away at the Hokies’ lead, but it helped limit the damage. The second stifled a potential rally.

“[The defense] did their job, and that’s one of my motivators as well,” Grein said. “[I’m] working hard for them because I know they’re working really hard for me.”

After losing four consecutive ACC games against Duke and NC State, the Hokies have won their last seven and are starting to peak at the right time.

“We’re doing a really good job bouncing back,” McMillan said. “Those four games definitely weren’t like us and that’s not how we expected the outcomes to be. We knew we needed to bounce back, and we’ve done it better than I ever could have thought.”

Box Score: No. 16 Virginia Tech 8, Georgia Tech 4 

5 Responses You are logged in as Test

  1. “You can kiss it goodbye”! Shades of the Washington Senator’s radio broadcast team, Ron Menchine and Shelby Whitfield. (I’m seeing credit given to a Pirates broadcaster Bob Prince.

    Hoping we hang on to that 16th rank so we can get a couple home games in the NCAAs and I can make it down to the ‘burg for those.

    1. Not looking good at the moment. Ranking means nothing and all bracketology has VT traveling as a #2 seed in the brackets.

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