Megan Good no-hitter completes JMU softball weekend sweep

jmu logoJMU freshman pitcher Megan Good joined an elite list on Sunday, as she threw the fourth no-hitter in program history to lead James Madison to an 8-0 Colonial Athletic Association softball victory over Elon at Veterans Memorial Park.

The Dukes extended their record win streak to 31 straight games and they improved to 40-6 on the year and 17-0 in CAA play. The Phoenix fell to 26-20 and 8-10 with the defeat.

The win also clinched JMU a share of the CAA regular-season title, and by virtue of holding the tiebreaker with Hofstra, earned the host site for the upcoming CAA Championship, May 6-8.

Good produced her first career no-hitter after allowing just two runners to reach base on walks while a third claimed first on a fielding error in the first inning. Good struck out six Elon batters and needed just 78 pitches to win her 24th game of the year, which tied JMU’s single-season record for victories in the circle.

JMU hit .333 on 7-for-21 batting but had 10 additional runners reach base on nine walks and a hit by pitch for an on-base percentage of .548. Madison’s walks totals was just one shy of the single-game record.

Sophomore center fielder Taylor Newton went 2-for-3 with a pair of singles while four other players reached base at least twice, including junior first baseman Jailyn Ford, who walked three times, and junior left fielder Hannah Hayes, who walked twice. In addition, freshman designated player Alyssa Buddle led all players with two RBIs.

After sophomore shortstop Niki Prince drew a lead-off walk and stole second base in the first, Good drove her in with a RBI double to right field, to give the Dukes an early 1-0 lead. In the fourth, JMU loaded the bases, and with one out, freshman pinch hitter Jessica Mrozek delivered a single to right, scoring Ford from third, making it 2-0. The Dukes added another score in the fifth for a 3-0 advantage, on a single by junior catcher Erica Field, which plated sophomore pinch runner Caitlin Viafora from 60 feet away.

The sixth inning was all JMU as the team more than hit around the order with Ford beginning and ending the frame. The Dukes quickly loaded the bases with no outs and Buddle drove in two runs on a single up the middle, extending the lead to 5-0.

After Elon loaded the bases again, sophomore right fielder Tahli Moore was walked to allow Hayes to trot home for the sixth run. Madison scored another run on a ground out to first and after Good walked to load the bases for the third time in the inning, Ford drew a full-count walk to give JMU the 8-0 run-rule win.

Chelsea White (5-2) took the losing decision after surrendering seven runs, seven hits, five walks and a hit by pitch in her 5.0 innings pitched. Kayla Caruso came in relief and walked four batters in two-thirds of an inning, which included walking home the run-rule clinching run.

JMU returns to action on Wednesday, April 29 when it hosts in-state foe Virginia Tech out of the Atlantic Coast Conference. First pitch for the doubleheader is set for 5 p.m. at Veterans Memorial Park. The Dukes are 4-1 against ACC opponents, with the lone defeat coming back in the season opener on Feb. 13, a 3-2 loss to the Hokies in eight innings.

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