Jones’s Grand Slam Powers No. 23 Gamecocks to Perfect Weekend
COLUMBIA, S.C. – The 23rd ranked South Carolina softball team capped off a perfect opening weekend with a 7-1 win over Virginia Sunday afternoon (Feb. 11) at the Carolina Classic.
All six hits for the Gamecocks came from different players. Kianna Jones led the way with a grand slam, her first home run of the season. Aniyah Black also drove in a pair of runs.
Freshman Sage Mardjetko earned her first win of the season, throwing five shutout innings. She scattered three while and struck out three. Jori Heard came on for the final two innings, allowing one run on one hit and two strikeouts.
It took Carolina a couple of innings to get going, but once they did, the Gamecocks broke the game open. Two walks and single loaded the bases for the Jones who came into the game batting 1.000 on the season. With a 2-1 count, Jones connected on a no-doubter that stayed inside the foul pole for her first career grand slam.
South Carolina added to the lead in the fourth when Marissa Gonzalez scampered home after Giulia Desiderio got into a rundown trying to steal second.
Black closed out the scoring for the Gamecocks in the fifth. Riley Blampied singled with one out and Jones followed with a walk. After a wild pitch moved both runners up, Black delivered with a double to the left center gap, easily scoring both runners.
Virginia’s lone run came in the top of the seventh. The Gamecocks finish opening weekend 5-0 for the first time since 2017.
South Carolina heads to Puerto Vallarta, Mexico for the Puerto Vallarta College Challenge February 15-17.
For the latest on South Carolina Softball, visit GamecocksOnline.com or follow the team’s social media accounts on Twitter @GamecockSoftbll, Facebook /GamecockSoftball, and Instagram @GamecockSoftball.