VIRGINIA BEACH -- Four-run first innings in both games Saturday propelled Virginia Wesleyan College's 13th-ranked softball Marlins to an Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC) sweep over the visiting WildCats of Randolph College.
Consistent hitting once again keyed the Virginia Wesleyan effort. The Marlins outhit the 'Cats 21-11, highlighted by six doubles and a triple. Rookie Cassety Howerin (Dover, Del./Caesar Rodney) smacked a double and triple in the Marlins' 9-3 win in the opener and sophomore Liz Bailey (Chesapeake/Greenbrier Christian) slapped a pair of doubles in a 13-2 VWC win in the second game.
Sami Pearce (Powhatan/Powhatan) and Howerin emerged as VWC's leaders with the bats in the two games, both finishing 4-for-6 at the plate. Pearce's effort was highlighted by a double and three runs-batted-in in the second contest. Howerin finished with three RBI overall. Junior Courtney Bogan (Round Hill/Woodgrove) and Bailey both knocked out three hits.
Senior Kristina Karagiorgis (Ashburn/Briarwoods) and junior Mary Shipp (Virginia Beach/First Colonial) picked up pitching wins for the Marlins. Karagiorgis extended her current winning streak to eight straight games, improving her record to 8-2 and her season strikeout total to 80. Shipp, who pitched in the second game, improved her record to 7-2. Sophomore Kasey Newcomb (Henderson, N.C./Creedmor South Granville) pitched three innings of relief in the first game and rookie Ilesh Burney (Bristol, Conn./Central) tossed the final inning in the second contest.
Virginia Wesleyan improved to 16-4 overall and to 6-2 in the league, while Randolph fell to 10-10 overall and to 3-5 in the league.
VWC returns to competition on Sunday, March 29, hosting the Hornets of Shenandoah University in a doubleheader beginning at 1:30 p.m.