By: Payam Agha-Ghassem, Staff Writer
Towson defended its home field once again on Sunday, defeating the College of Charleston Cougars, 8-0, in five innings to complete a three-game sweep of its conference foe.
The Tigers (22-16, 5-7 Colonial Athletic Association) extended their winning streak to eight and they’ve won their last nine home games.
“I think we found a fire within us,” senior pitcher Missy McCormick said. “We found what drives us and once you win one, you want to win two and it’s just been a domino effect.”
McCormick pitched her third straight complete-game shutout and second against the Cougars (20-22, 4-8 CAA). She allowed just one hit on Sunday and improved her record to 11-5 with a 2.35 ERA.
“I have to credit a lot of my success to my pitching coach,” McCormick said. “When she came into this program, she completely turned it around. She scouts players and knows what to throw. I couldn’t do it without her.”
The Tigers scored four runs in the first inning with RBI singles from McCormick, sophomore infielder Holiday Cahill and freshman infielder Olivia Batlazar.
With the Tigers leading 6-0 in the fourth, Cahill drove in another two runs with a single to left field to extend the lead to 8-0.
Cahill has been one of the best hitters in the CAA this season. She’s hitting .426 with 10 home runs and 32 RBI. She leads the conference in batting average, slugging percentage, on base percentage and home runs. She already has more home runs and RBI now than she did all of last season.
“There were a lot of nerves last year as a freshman,” Cahill said. “It’s really about just helping my team. It has a lot to do with being confident. The nerves are still there, but it’s a good nerve now.”
The Tigers won the first game of a doubleheader on Saturday against the Cougars, 5-0.
McCormick pitched a complete game shutout with five strikeouts. She flirted with a no-hitter and got some help in the field in the fifth inning when sophomore outfielder Jessica South made a diving catch in right field to preserve the no-hit bid.
McCormick allowed her first and only hit in the top of the sixth inning off the bat of Cougars’ third baseman Taylor Dupree.
The Tigers’ offense put runs on the board early. Freshman infielder Brook Miko tripled to drive in a run in the first inning. Cahill followed with an RBI single to give the Tigers a 2-0 lead.
Miko drove in another two runs in the second inning with a single to left field. She finished the game 2-for-4 with three RBI and one run scored.
The Tigers won the first game of the doubleheader on Saturday, 14-5. Cahill went 2-for-2 with four RBI and two runs scored.
Towson will look to finish this nine-game home stand undefeated when it takes on the Saint Francis Red Flash on Wednesday. First pitch is set for 3 p.m.
The Tigers will then head to Wilmington, North Carolina for a weekend conference series against the UNC Wilmington Seahawks.
“Every game is a new chance,” McCormick said. “You can’t carry on wins. You can’t carry on runs, so you got to start fresh and find a fire every time. “