PITTSBURGH - North Carolina softball claimed both wins in a doubleheader over Pittsburgh Saturday, recording a dominant 9-0 victory in the first and holding on for an 8-7 extra-inning win in game two.
Jenna Kelly finished the day with four RBIs, three runs and two hits, including a three-run homer in game two. Kendra Lynch smashed a grand slam in the first game, while Lori Spingola earned the win in both games as Carolina improved to 13-11 overall and 7-1 in ACC play.
"Lori Spingola had a really gutsy performance today, and I'm really proud of how the team came out and performed today," head coach Donna J. Papa said. "In the first game, we just went right at them, hitting a few home runs and knocking their pitcher out of the game after the first inning. Game two was a different game. We went back and forth, and I was really proud of how we fought and came back."
"We just did so many things really well today. I thought we were disciplined at the plate and had solid defense the whole day, and I was proud of how hard we fought," Papa said.
The Tar Heels came out with their bats swinging in game one, taking their fourth eight-run ruled game of the year.
Erin Satterfield and Amy Nece got the hits rolling with back-to-back singles, and Kristen Brown was hit by a pitch to load the bases. Two Tar Heels reached on a fielder's choice as the runners were tagged out at home, but a third fielder's choice by Kati Causey scored Brown for the first run. Then with bases still loaded, Kendra Lynch made the most of the opportunity and smashed a grand slam out right. Jordan Scarboro then belted her first homer of the year, a two-run shot to left center, to make it 7-0 after Carolina's first at-bat.
After a pitching change for the Panthers in the second, Amber Parrish hit a solo home run to left center to make it 8-0.
The Tar Heels quieted down for the next two innings until the fifth, when Satterfield hit a bunt single, moved to second as Nece reached on an error, and then scored on Brown's RBI single to right center.
Lori Spingola struck out four batters and gave up just three hits in her third shut out of the season.
After Tori Nirschl drew a walk and Jordan Fannin reached on an error, Maggie Sevilla knocked in two runs with a double to right center. Carly Thea then hit a two-run homer to left center to give the Panthers the 4-3 upper hand that they'd hold until the fifth.
Satterfield singled through the right side and then Parrish and Kelly drew walks to load the bases. Kati Causey then drew a third-straight walk to force Satterfield across the plate and even the game at 4-4. After a pitching change for the Panthers, Lauren Walker hit a solid double to left, knocking Parrish and Kelly in to give the Tar Heels back the lead at 6-4.
In the sixth, UNC tacked on another run as Scarboro doubled down the left field line, advanced to third on a fly out and then scored on an RBI single by Nece.
Pitt evened the game again in the bottom of the sixth though.Savannah King was hit by a pitch and advanced to second on a singly by Ashlee Sills. After Ashley Bone came in to replace Spingola in the circle, Katherine Kramer drew a walk, loading the bases for Tori Nirschl who hit a two-run single. Jordan Fannin then hit an RBI single to left to tie the game at 7-7.
After a quiet top half, the Tar Heels held the Panthers scoreless in the bottom of the seventh with some clutch defensive plays to force extra innings.
In the eighth, Nece and Brown each recorded a base hit before Kelly singled to right to knock in Nece for the game winning run.
Lori Spingola pitched 7.1 innings for the win, improving to 8-6 for the year with the two victories today. Spingola fanned nine while giving up just three earned runs and seven hits. Ashley Bone pitched .2 innings, giving up one run and two hits.
With the two wins on Saturday, Spingola now has the UNC career record for wins with 98, surpassing Crystal Cox's (2003-06) record of 96 wins.
Up Next: Game three of the series is scheduled for Sunday at noon, but may be pushed back due to cold temperatures. Video and live stats will be available. Stay tuned to GoHeels.com and follow @UNCSoftball on Twitter for game updates.