The Niners come together following a victorious win. Photo by Katelynn Pennington.

Charlotte started off their first weekend of the 2018 season at Elon on Friday afternoon where they swept the double header. After a long off season, the 49ers set the pace by winning their first game of the year 5-2 against the Phoenix. The second game started out a little rough for the Niners, but they ended up capping off the weekend with another win at 6-3.

Game one Charlotte took the lead in the opening inning with 1-0 when Haley Wiseman struck out two in the bottom of the first. It took until the bottom of the third for Elon to score their first run, but they soon took charge of the game in the bottom of the fourth with the score of 2-1.

The Niners stormed back on the field at the top of the fifth, and Meredith Harris sent Haley Pace home, tying the game at 2-2. After two more innings without either team getting another point on the board, the first game of the 2018 season headed into extra innings.

However, one inning is all Charlotte needed to take control and cement their first victory of the day over the Phoenix. Becca Shipper made it home from second with the help of Haley’s two-out single to the left side of the infield.

After capturing two more runs, the Niners left Elon scoreless at the bottom of the eighth, ultimately ending the game with a 5-2 win. Charlotte had little time to celebrate their victory before taking the field again for game two against the Phoenix.

Elon was hungry for a win after game one and stole the lead from the bottom of the first. The Phoenix secured two more runs, which extended their margin to 3-0 in the third, and left Charlotte with nothing.

Bethany Doty ran to first after she scored her first career hit as a 49er in the top of the third. Shipper stepped up to bat and sent Doty home, which brought Charlotte their first run of the game.

After she hit a double in the fourth, Haley was sent home by Grace Beatty. At this point, Charlotte was trailing Elon by only 1 point with the score of 3-2. Sophomore Carson Pace pitched her first full inning of the day, shut down Elon in the bottom of the fourth.

Again, Haley stepped up to the plate and delivered a two-run single that gave Charlotte the lead of 5-3 and sent freshman Taylor Tompkins home for the first time in a 49er uniform. After the Niners held off Elon in the bottom of the fifth, Tompkins scored the final run of the game at the top of the sixth when Shipper singled the ball to left field.

Carson earned her first win pitching as a 49er after she allowed only one hit and no runs for the last four innings of the game. Following this exciting weekend at Elon, head coach Aimee DeVos is only a single win away from 600 total wins in her career.

The Niners host South Carolina at the Phillips Softball Complex this coming Wednesday at 5:00pm to play in their first home game of the season.

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Veronica Shoemaker is a sophomore at UNC Charlotte from Livonia Michigan. She packed up her life and moved down to North Carolina to chase a career in NASCAR. She is working towards a Communications and Spanish double-major with a minor in Journalism. She is also a huge sports fan, a part-time artist, and a writer for the Niner Times sport section.

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