AUBURN, Ala. - The Mickey Dean era had a solid beginning as No. 14 Auburn Softball completed a doubleheader sweep against Marshall and Wichita State Friday evening at Jane B. Moore Field as part of the opening-weekend Plainsman Invitational.
Starting pitchers Kaylee Carlson and Makayla Martin were the stars of the day, each pitching a gem in their respective seven-inning shutouts. The pair combined for 15 strikeouts, nine hits and just one walk for the day.
"We did a nice job of attacking," Dean said. "We didn't throw a whole lot of pitches tonight, which is nice. Our defense made the plays and got us out of some situations there early against Marshall and we turned a nice double play to end the game against Wichita."
Carlson (1-0) got her turn first in the opening game vs. Marshall. The senior right-hander struck-out nine batters with a lone walk and stranded eight runners on base to lead the Tigers to a 4-0 win over the Thundering Herd (0-1).
The Auburn bats got off to a fast start, scoring two runs in the first inning. Sophomore Justus Perry led the way going 2-for-2 with a run scored. Senior Victoria Draper was 1-for-2 with one RBI and a run scored while sophomore designated hitter Tannon Snow plated a RBI on a sac fly in her first at-bat as a Tiger.
Marshall starting pitcher Abigail Tolbert (0-1) was charged with the loss, tossing 5.1 innings and surrendering six hits.
Auburn's second game vs. Wichita State (0-1) saw no let down in performance in the pitcher's circle as Martin (1-0), a junior right-hander, tossed a shutout gem of her own to lead the Tigers to a 2-0 victory. Martin struck out six batters while holding the Shockers to just three hits. She finished the game by retiring 12 out of the last 13 batters faced.
Offensively, the Tigers got a big start behind two first inning runs on a pair of hits. Sophomore KK Crocker plated Draper on her first career triple, a laser that landed in deep center. Freshman Taylon Snow brought her home on the next pitch on a single.
Auburn's bats were held mostly in check for the remainder of the game as Wichita State's starting pitcher Bailey Lange (0-1) did not allow another hit the rest of the way.
The Shockers threatened in the top of seventh inning putting a pair of runners on first and second with no outs. Martin, however, then induced a 5-4-3 double play to clinch the contest.
The Plainsman Invitational continues tomorrow with Auburn slated to take on Tennessee Tech at 2 p.m. CT followed by a showdown with Furman at 4:30 p.m. CT.