CHATTANOOGA (GoMocs.com) – The Chattanooga Mocs softball team bounced back after allowing five runs in the top of the first in Thursday’s 7-5 win over Tennessee Tech on the opening day of the Chattanooga Challenge.
With the win, Chattanooga improves to 3-2 on the season. Tennessee Tech falls to 0-5 after the two-run loss. UTC marked its ninth-straight home opening win and hasn’t dropped an opener at Frost Stadium since Feb. 9, 2008.
The Golden Eagles jumped out of the gate with five runs on just two hits with the help of five walks from Chattanooga’s Celie Hudson. Freshman Alli Swinford relieved Hudson with two outs in the inning and escaped without allowing another run, limiting the damage to 5-0.
From that point, it was all UTC. Chattanooga plated a pair of runs in the bottom of the second when junior Amanda Beltran belted her first home run of the season over the right center wall to cut the deficit to 5-2.
The Mocs busted out for five runs in the bottom of the fourth and that would be all they needed. UTC loaded the bases with one out after a single, walk and hit-by-pitch. Brook Womack drew a walk with the bases full to bring in a run to make it 5-3. Ashley Conner scored a run on a wild pitch before Hayleigh Weissenbach lifted a sacrifice fly to center field to tie the game 5-5. J.J. Hamill broke the tie with a two-run single up the middle, giving UTC the 7-5 lead they would need to capture the win.
Swinford (1-0) was spotless in her extended relief appearance earning her first career win. She tossed 6.1 scoreless innings and allowed just three hits while striking out five and walking one.
Beltran finished a perfect 1-for-1 with her two-run homerun, a walk and a hit-by-pitch. Hamill ended the day 2-for-3 with two runs batted in.
Chattanooga returns to the field tomorrow in the Chattanooga Challenge for a doubleheader against Sacred Heart at 3 p.m. and Indiana State at 5 p.m. For full tournament information, ticket information, game times and more please visit our Tournament Central page. Follow @GoMocsSB on Twitter for the quickest updates.