“All I could think of was, ‘Are you kidding me?’ It was unbelievable.” Beth Torina, LSU coach on Brittany Mack’s game-winning hit
Brittany Mack provided the senior day heroics, but not in the way standout pitcher has been accustomed to, instead ripping a two-out, RBI double for her first career hit and first career RBI as the LSU softball team beat Georgia 1-0 Sunday at Tiger Park.
“I don’t think you could have scripted a much better day for senior day at Tiger Park,” LSU coach Beth Torina said. “All the seniors contributed. They’ve had such great careers, and they deserve this day. I really don’t know if it gets a lot better than this.”
Junior Rachele Fico (16-9) struck out six in a four-hit shutout as the Tigers (34-18, 15-10 Southeastern Conference) snapped a seven-game losing streak to Georgia (38-13, 15-10) and moved back into a fourth-place tie with the Bulldogs in the SEC standings.
“Brittany Mack is awesome,” Fico said. “I’m so glad that she’s my teammate, and she’s one of my best friends — on and off the field. She works so hard and sets such a good example for everyone else. I’m just so happy that she’s my teammate. I couldn’t be prouder of her today coming up to bat and getting the job done.”
Tammy Wray hit a leadoff single to open the fifth inning. Pinch runner Alex Boulet advanced to second base on Ashley Applegate’s sacrifice bunt and scooted over to third base on Morgan Russell’s ground out.
On the first pitch of the at-bat, Mack crushed the offering toward right center field, landing in front of center fielder Brittany Hubbard’s diving attempt. Boulet crossed the plate for the game’s only run.
“All I could think was, ‘Are you kidding me?’ It was unbelievable for her to get her first career hit and her first career RBI in that moment,” Torina said. “I know Brittany’s a good hitter, and I have all the confidence in her abilities. The fact that she’s the one that scored that run today — she’s the one that was selfless, and she gave up the ball before the game to allow to Rachele Fico to pitch. You really just couldn’t have scripted a better ending to their senior day.”
“It was a solid hit,” Mack said. “I thought that with my luck the center fielder was going to make a miraculous dive and catch it. I looked up and saw that it kept going, so I had to fist pump. I kept going to second. It was just unbelievable not only to get the hit but also to score Alex Boulet. I told her when she was going out to pinch run, I told her, ‘You’re scoring this time.’”
LSU wraps up the regular season with a three-game series at Kentucky, with games at 5 p.m. Friday and noon Saturday and Sunday.
“This win was huge today for us,” Fico said. “We got swept against Tennessee earlier in the year, and we vowed that we wouldn’t let it happen again. We knew that we really had to come out fighting today and do whatever it took to win. We really got it done. We’ve got to keep playing this way – practicing hard and executing in games.”