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Kelly Nelson
Kelly Nelson

Nelson Shines, Strikes Out 27 as Softball Splits with Jacksonville

Holy Cross Athletics   03-06-2019

 

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Game 2 Box Score

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Two outs, bases loaded, full count, bottom of the 16th inning, ahead 2-1, already with 26 strikeouts in the game: that’s where most people expect to be in just their third collegiate start. Actually, it really isn’t. Nonetheless, that’s where Kelly Nelson found herself and the Crusaders Wednesday evening against Jacksonville University. She fired home a strike for her 27th strikeout of the game and claimed the victory.

The Crusaders ended up splitting on the day, losing the second game 7-6, but Nelson’s performance will live on. The 27 strikeouts shatter the old program record of 16, break the Patriot League record of 18, and came one shy of the NCAA record of 28. In fact, Nelson is the only player ever to throw 27 strikeouts with 28 being hit twice and 26 four times.

Other late-game heroics belong to Bailey ChavezIn the 16th, she bunted with the intention of trying to beat the throw to first. Not only did she do that, but when the catcher's throw went wide and made its way to the right field fence, Chavez rounded the bases and made it all the way home to put the Crusaders up, 2-1, paving the way for Nelson to finish things off in the bottom half of the inning.

With the 1-1 day, Holy Cross moves to 2-6, and Jacksonville to 7-11.

Nelson’s full stat line reads 16.0 IP, 27 K, 0 ER, 7 H. Taylor Wahler led the way offensively on the day going 4-for-10 with a run and an RBI. Jackie Brewster went 4-for-11 with a run and an RBI. Erin Bengston and Chavez each scored twice, while Bengston knocked in another.

 

Game 1

Second Inning:

  • Bengston started the inning off with a walk and was quickly moved over to second thanks to a Jessie Nagel sac bunt.
  • Bengston advanced to third on Alyssa Gutierrez’s ground out to first and scored when Hannah Horton hit a hard grounder up the middle that the second baseman couldn’t handle.

Third:

  • Thanks to two singles and an error, the Dolphins got one back to even it up.

Eighth:

  • Nelson set a program record with her 17th strikeout of the game and then added to it with 18 and 19 in the inning.

Eleventh:

  • With a runner on second and no outs, Nelson got a pop out, Bengston caught a runner stealing at third, and Nelson ended the inning with a strikeout.

Fourteenth:

  • Wahler started the inning with a single, but was caught stealing at second
  • With runners on second and third and only one out, Nelson got the Dolphins to pop out and then line out to Gutierrez to keep the game tied.

Sixteenth:

  • Chavez laid down a dribbler and when the catcher’s throw to first went wide, she was at third before the right fielder could catch up to it. Chavez easily beat the throw home.
  • Bases loaded, two outs, full count, and Nelson ended the game with her 27th strikeout.

 

Game 2

Second Inning:

  • Bengston singled to start the inning and advanced to second off a Nagel sac bunt.
  • After stealing third, Bengston scored on a passed ball to put the Crusaders on the board.

Fourth:

  • Jankowski singled with one out in the inning and followed it up by stealing second.
  • She scored when Nagel singled to right to increase the lead to two.

Sixth:

  • Wahler reached base on an infield single and moved over to second when Jankowki laid down a sac bunt.
  • She advanced to third on a wild pitch and Bengston drove her in when the third baseman chose to try and get Wahler out at home, but the throw wasn't in time.
  • The Dolphins tied things up in the bottom half of the inning when they hit a triple with runners on second and third and then singled home the tying run.

Seventh:

  • Sydney Burr doubled to start the inning and Molly Neil came on to pinch run.
  • Carley Boothe moved Neil to third with a sac bunt.
  • Brewster hit a grounder to short and Neil got stuck in a pickle between third and home. After a couple throws back and forth, the third baseman dropped the ball and Neil slid in safely to regain the lead.
  • The Crusaders weren’t done there. Wahler hit a bloop single to left and drove in Chavez. Jankowski followed with a ground out that brought Brewster home.
  • In the bottom half, the Dolphins tied it up with five hits in the frame. Then, with one out and bases loaded, they hit a sac fly to center to win the game.

 

UP NEXT:

Holy Cross takes on Penn State and Villanova on Friday, March 8 in the first day of the USF Series Tournament.


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