CHARLOTTE, N.C. – A five home run day from the WKU Softball bats helped the
Hilltoppers clinch their second Conference USA series victory on Friday with a
doubleheader sweep over Charlotte. Game one saw the Red and White score all three
runs of their 3-2 win off leadoff home runs before WKU added two more long balls in
a 5-1 game two victory.
“The long ball was huge for us today,” head coach Amy Tudor opened. “We did a great
job of picking our pitches and kept our bats in the zone, which resulted in some
hard hits. I’m really proud of how we played defense and ran the bases today.”
“We still have a bit to work on but our effort has been there all week,” Tudor
continued “The team has been focused in practice and carried that into today’s
The Hilltoppers climbed to 21-11 on the season with the wins while improving to 5-3
in C-USA tilts. Charlotte fell to 10-21 with the setbacks and now sits at 4-7 in
Saturday’s series finale is slated for 11 a.m. CT from the Sue M. Daughtridge
Stadium. The Hilltoppers will look for their first series sweep since the 2017
series against Southern Miss.
GAME 31: WKU 3, CHARLOTTE 2
Jordan Thomas made sure the Hilltoppers struck first in Friday’s opening game,
knocking the third pitch of the day to straight-away center field for her second
home run of the season. Charlotte responded in its first trip to the plate by
capitalizing on a walk followed by an RBI double.
WKU struck again in the top of the third with another leadoff home run, that time
coming off the bat of Rebekah Engelhardt to regain the Hilltopper advantage. The
fourth inning opened the same way as the first and third – with another leadoff
dinger – as Kelsey McGuffin notched her fourth home run of the season.
Charlotte got one run back in the bottom of the sixth after Charlotte’s leadoff
batter singled and ultimately came around to score. Kelsey Aikey worked through the
sixth frame stranding the sixth and seventh Charlotte batters of the day at the
Shelby Nunn closed things out in the circle for the Red and White, picking up three
outs and her second save of the season. Charlotte stranded a pair of runners on
board after a walk and a hit in the frame.
Aikey secured the win with 6.0 innings of work for the Hilltoppers, moving to 7-2 on
her sophomore campaign.
GAME 32: WKU 5, CHARLOTTE 1
The Hilltoppers struck first again in game two from the Sue M. Daughtridge Stadium.
Following a scoreless first frame on both sides, the Hilltoppers launched their
fourth leadoff home run of the day as McGuffin got WKU started with her second homer
on the day. Brittany Vaughn followed with a single to register her first at bat of
the day (2 walks, HBP in game one). Two batters later, Engelhardt pushed the WKU
advantage to 3-0 with a two-run dinger over the left-center fence to leave the park
for the second time on the day.
Charlotte would scratch across the next run, coming in the bottom of the fourth with
a two-out RBI single to avoid the shutout. Nunn would work out of the frame leaving
the bases full of 49er runners.
Vaughn plated the Hilltoppers’ first non-home run tally of the day with her first
sacrifice fly of the season as Paige Carter touched home. The Red and White tacked
on an insurance run in their final trip to the plate with another sacrifice fly.
After Jordan Vorbrink got on board with a leadoff single, Carter moved her into
scoring position with a sac bunt. Vorbrink advanced to third on a wild pitch before
McGuffin stepped into the box and score Vorbrink with a sac fly deep to right field
for the final 5-1 margin.
Nunn tossed her eighth complete game of the season en route to her 13th win in the
circle for the Hilltoppers. The freshman used 103 pitches to register five
strikeouts while allowing one Charlotte run.
* Jordan Thomas continued her leadoff dominance by opening the series with
her second home run of the season. Game two opened with a leadoff single from the
freshman. Thomas is now 24-for-45 in leadoff opportunities.
* Rebekah Engelhardt added her fourth home run of the season to lead off the
third inning of game one before adding her fifth long ball of the year in the second
inning of game two. Kelsey McGuffin added WKU’s third home run of game one- her
fourth of the year – to lead off the fourth frame before adding her fifth homer of
the year in the second inning of game two. WKU’s 3-home run game marked the squad’s
third outing of such of the season.
* The Hilltoppers now own 25 home runs on the season. Entering the day, WKU
had only hit one leadoff home run before 4-of-5 came in that fashion on Friday.
Eleven of WKU’s homers have come in C-USA play (eight games).
* Brittany Vaughn stole her team-leading 11th and 12th bases on the day and
has yet to be caught stealing on the season. As a team, WKU is 45-for-54 in stolen
* WKU improved to 8-4 all-time against Charlotte with the doubleheader sweep.
The Hilltoppers are now 3-2 when playing in Charlotte.
* Jordan Vorbrink and Kelsey McGuffin each tallied a pair of hits in the
day’s second game. Vorbrink now owns four multi-hit games on the year while McGuffin
is up to nine.
* Kelsey McGuffin and Rebekah Engelhardt each tallied multiple RBI in game
two. McGuffin and Engelhardt are both now up to four multi-RBI games on the season.