HENRICO, VA (May 7, 2023) – The Claflin University Lady Panthers (31-11) clawed their way to the championship final round of the 2023 Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (CIAA) Softball Championship Tournament with a 3-1 win over the Winston-Salem State Rams (21-14), Saturday afternoon. The Lady Panthers came out strong and never looked back on their way to the win.
The Lady Panthers came out with an aggressive batting performance but had to turn on some equally impressive defense to claim the win. As a team, the Lady Panthers totaled seven hits in the game with freshman Kourtney White once again leading the way. She went two-for-four in the game with a triple and a run batted in (RBI). Senior first base Alexandria Beavers added a two-for-three effort of her own.
Things got going early with a hot start for the Lady Panthers. White kicked things off with an RBI triple to score senior right fielder Brenay Howard. The run was followed by an RBI sacrifice bunt by freshman Cydney Cooper that scored sophomore outfielder Kennedy Baskerville in the second inning. Senior pitcher Jaelyn Jackson added an RBI sacrifice fly that scored senior second base Jasmin Dukes in the sixth inning.
With the 3-0 lead in had, the Lady Panthers turned to their defense to claim the win. The team allowed a seventh-inning score by the Rams after a fielding error, but the Lady Panthers were able to close out the win with a pop fly to Cooper.
The Lady Panthers utilized some quality pitching to claim the win. Sophomore Breyanna Collins (11-5) got the start and she finished with the win. She threw four innings and finished with no runs allowed with two strikeouts. Senior Jaelyn Jackson came in for three innings and she recorded six strikeouts.
With the win, the Lady Panthers advance to the final round of the 2023 CIAA Softball Championship Tournament. The team will take on the Bowie State Bulldogs in a rematch of last year’s conference championship final. After taking a loss to the Bulldogs in last night’s semifinal round, the Lady Panthers will need a pair of wins against the Bulldogs to claim the championship.
For more information on Lady Panthers softball, contact the Claflin University Office of Athletics Media Relations at (803) 535-5548 or log on to www.athletics.claflin.edu.