March 2, 2012

Bobcats Calm the Storm, Sweep Tornados 7-3, 6-5

by Brian DeCandia, sports information graduate assistant

MILLEDGEVILLE, Ga. – The Georgia College softball squad (12-10, 2-0 PBC) swept the Brevard College Tornados (7-7) at the Peeler Complex Friday night, 7-3, 6-5. The two victories push the Bobcats over .500 for the first time this season. 

In game one the Bobcats struck quickly putting up three in the first two frames. After a Whitney Okvist (Kennesaw, Ga.) double to centerfield, junior Natalie Bellantoni (Oviedo, Fla.) hit a rocket back up the middle to put GC ahead 1-0. The Bobcats never looked back scoring two in the second, one in the fourth and three more in the fifth.

Okvist finished a perfect 4-for-4 adding a pair of RBI, runs and stolen bases. Freshman Mikayla Sparks (Macon, Ga.) scored two and drove in one on a 2-for-3 night. Bellantoni finished 2-for-4 with two RBI.

Sabrina Chandler (Covington, Ga.) (5-3) pitched another great game for the 'Cats scattering six hits over six innings and only allowing one earned run in the victory. 

In game two the Bobcats were fast out-of-the-gate, loading the bases in the bottom half of the first. Haley Burnett (Columbus, Ga.) drew a walk with the bases chucked to put the Bobcats ahead 1-0. Two sacrifice flies added two more runs in the first frame. 

Brevard cut into the lead with a Brittany Tucker single to center, plating two Tornados in the third. Trailing 6-3 in the seventh inning the Tornados pushed two across but stranded the tying run on second base as Burnett fanned the final hitter. 

Burnett helped herself going 2-for-2 at the dish, driving in two runs. She pitched a complete game, allowing two earned runs and recording four strikeouts. Okvist had another solid performance finishing 2-for-4 with an RBI, a run scored and two more stolen bags. She finished 6-for-8 on the afternoon with three RBI, three runs and four steals.

She is a perfect 28-of-28 on the base paths this season, putting her second on the single-season record list, four behind Leigh Jacobs (1995-1998). Okvist has a combined 52 stolen bases in her first two seasons placing her third on the all-time list and just nine behind Aundrea Baker (2003-2006) for sole possession of second place.

GC softball continues this long home stand hosting Tusculum College Wednesday, March 7 in a doubleheader slated to start at 3 p.m. 

The Georgia College Department of Athletics, two-time winners of the PBC Commissioner's Cup, sponsors 10 varsity athletic programs at the NCAA Division II level. As a Division II program, Bobcat Athletics prides itself on balancing the life of the student-athlete, evidenced by the teams' multiple appearances in post-season competition as well as documented academic success and community-service involvement. Sign up at www.twitter.com/BobcatSports and www.facebook.com/gcbobcats for up-to-the-minute reports, and visit www.GCBobcats.com for more information, and to nominate your favorite former Bobcats and Colonials to the GC Athletics Hall of Fame.