FORT VALLEY, Georgia - The hits - and the wins - keep coming for the Florida Gulf Coast University softball team. The Eagles extended their record win streak to 28 games with a pair of regional wins Friday in the Fort Valley State University softball tournament.
FGCU (45-4 overall, 12-3 South Region) defeated host Fort Valley State 20-1 late Friday after picking up a 14-0 win over Paine College in the first game of the day.
In the second game, freshman right fielder LeeAnne McDowell (Arcadia, Fla.) went 3-for-3 with three home runs and five RBI to lead an 18-hit Eagles attack. McDowell became the first FGCU player to hit three home runs in a single game and now has six home runs on the season, a new FGCU freshman record. Junior left fielder Jessica Rouse (Jacksonville, Fla.) added a solo shot – her record 16th of the season - while sophomore designated player Hillary Johnson (Fort Myers, Fla.) hit a three-run jack. Senior shortstop Christine Beck (Hudson, Fla.) smashed a grand slam for FGCU.
Junior right-hander Sarah Backe (Flossmoor, Ill.) tossed a two-hitter with seven strikeouts in the five-inning complete game win to improve to 7-0.
Against Paine, FGCU posted its 24th shutout of the season. Freshman right-hander Dana Frantz (Brighton, Mich.) won her sixth decision without a loss with a complete-game three hitter while striking out six.
Rouse belted her 15th home run of the season while junior Rachel Homan (Vero Beach, Fla.) hit her first and McDowell her third homer for FGCU. Freshman Rachel Holloway (Cape Coral, Fla.) added a three-run triple.
Weather permitting, the Eagles are scheduled to play three games tomorrow, starting at 10 a.m. against Claflin.