No. 24/25 James Madison limited UNCW to just four hits while producing early-runs in both outings, as the Dukes cruised to 7-1 and 8-0 home victories in front of a packed crowd on Saturday at Veterans Memorial Park.
The Dukes extended their win streak to 22 straight games, as they improved to 31-6 on the year and 10-0 in CAA play while the Seahawks fell to 15-20 and 2-9. The Dukes had season-best attendances as 624 were on hand for game one before 737 saw JMU’s game-two shutout.
JMU’s two starting pitchers in freshman Megan Good and junior Jailyn Ford combined to allow only two hits and two walks, while striking out 17 Seahawk batters. Sophomore shortstop Niki Prince hit .600 (3-5) in the lead-off spot with two runs, one RBI and two walks while four other Dukes who started both games hit .500.
The Dukes and Seahawks close the weekend series on Sunday at 1 p.m. The game can be heard on MadiZONE (audio only).
Game 1: No. 24/25 JMU 7, UNCW 1
James Madison accrued its third-highest hit total of the season, with 13, and scored all seven runs in the first three innings en route to a 7-1 win over UNCW in game one of the doubleheader at Veterans Memorial Park.
Sophomore shortstop Niki Prince went 3-for-4 with a run and RBI while junior first baseman Jailyn Ford was 2-for-3 with a RBI to pace the team’s offense. Freshman pitcher Megan Good stayed unbeaten after throwing 5.2 innings of no-hit softball before giving up her first hit, as she improved to 18-0 this year. She also struck out five UNCW batters while walking just two.
The Dukes took an early 2-0 lead in the first off the bat of Good. After getting a runner aboard, Good smacked her sixth home run of the season over the left field fence to give the hosts a two-run advantage.
JMU tacked on four more runs on five hits in the season. The Dukes had runners on the corners with one out and Prince doubled to center to drive in sophomore third baseman Madyson Moran. On the next at-bat, junior catcher Erica Fieldsingled to the pitcher, plating sophomore right fielder Tahli Moore, making it 4-0. The Dukes added a run each off a Good ground out and Ford double to left center, giving them a 6-0 advantage.
JMU added another run in the third while UNCW scored its lone run in the seventh inning.
Senior pitcher Heather Kiefer came in to pitch 1.1 innings of relief, giving up one run and two hits, while striking out two. Taking the loss for the Seahawks was Peyton Jordan (5-5), who conceded seven runs and 13 hits in her six innings.
Game 2: No. 24/25 JMU 8, UNCW 0 (5 inn.)
James Madison completed its Saturday sweep with a pair of four-run innings out of the gates, downing UNCW 8-0 in five innings in game two at Veterans Memorial Park.
Junior catcher Erica Field and sophomore center fielder Taylor Newton both went 2-for-3 with two runs apiece while Newton drove in another.
Junior pitcher Jailyn Ford threw a complete-game, one-hitter and struck out 12 Seahawks to move her season record to 11-4, winning her eighth straight decision. Ford also hit her team-leading eighth home run of the season and the 32nd of her career.
The Dukes batted around the order in each of the first two innings, striking for four runs in each frame.
Madison went ahead 1-0 off a Newton single to first base, scoring Field from third. Freshman first baseman Megan Good made it 2-0 when she scored on a wild pitch and Newton slid into home, also on a wild pitch, two batters later for a 3-0 lead. Junior left fielder Hannah Hayes completed the scoring in the first after she was hit by a pitch, stole second, advanced on a wild pitch and scoring on an illegal pitch.
In the next inning, sophomore shortstop Niki Prince led off the second-inning scoring after another illegal pitch with her standing on third base. Ford ripped a two-run homer deep over the center field wall to give the Dukes a 7-0 lead. Newton doubled down the left field line and after a Hayes walk, freshman designated player Jessica Mrozek completed the team’s scoring with a single through the left side, scoring Newton for the second time on the evening.
The Seahawks were held without a hit for the first 4.2 innings, having the ball left the infield just once on a fly out to right but down to their last out, Kristen Jernigan hit a double down the right field line to break out Ford’s no-hit attempt. Ford responded by striking out Casey Rowland on three pitches to close out the game.