“At points in the season we’ve struggled to put all
cylinders of our game together, but this weekend I thought the girls did a
fantastic job in all aspects,” coach Donna Papa said. “Our hitting was great,
our pitchers did a great job, and defensively we were very solid. We really put
it together this weekend.”
Papa said while she believes the team has been excelling
defensively this season, its performances at the plate and in the circle have
been slightly less consistent. She said the patience and focus the hitters and
pitchers displayed in their performances this weekend shows signs of good
things to come.
“(Our performance) infused us with a little more excitement
and confidence,” Papa said. “We proved to ourselves that when we play smart and
do all the little things, we can beat anybody.”
The Tar Heels posted two shutouts over the weekend, taking
games one and two 7-0 and 3-1, respectively, before finishing out the series sweep
with an 8-0 victory in game three on Sunday .
UNC combined for 19 hits on the weekend, three of which were
Redshirt sophomore Jenna Kelly , who had four of the Tar Heels' hits
including a grand slam in game one , said her team’s selflessness and drive to
work together made the difference for them at the plate this weekend.
“I think we have a lot to be proud of,” Kelly said. “We were
disciplined at the plate, and my teammates at the top of the lineup did the
little things to get on base, which allowed the middle of the lineup to do
their job and drive them in.
“We worked together, and we executed. We had a great
Lynch combined with pitchers Lori Spingola and Lauren Batten
to limit Virginia to one run on 12 hits in three games while striking out nine Cavaliers.
“We were a lot more focused on keeping the ball down,” Papa
said. “In the 19 innings we played, I think we only had one or two lead-off
batters get on, and that was huge.
“This weekend gave us a lot of confidence. We’re getting
back into who we are.”