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Virginia Tech softball: Hokies off to a 4-0 start

It looks like another special season for the Hokies.

NCAA Softball: Maryland at Virginia Tech James Lang-USA TODAY Sports

It’s that time of the year. It’s time for Virginia Tech baseball and softball to return to the pristine grounds of English Field and Tech Softball Park. Expectations are high for Virginia Tech’s softball team after back-to-back appearances in the NCAA Super Regional. Early indications are it will be another great season for the Hokies.

Tech opened the 2023 softball season on Thursday with a trip to Wilmington, North Carolina, where the Hokies will participate in the UNCW Tournament. The Hokies defeated East Carolina 8-0 in the opener as pitcher Emma Lemley tossed a four-hit shutout for Tech, striking out seven Pirates. The Hokies had 11 hits.

On Thursday afternoon, VT defeated host UNC-Wilmington 5-1. Freshman Lyndsey Grein made her collegiate debut, striking out nine Seahawks and allowing just four hits and one run. Juniors Emma Ritter and Cameron Fagan each went two of four from the plate, knocking it two runs apiece.

On Friday, Tech defeated UNCW again, this time by a score of 8-0, as Lemley went the distance, allowing only one hit and striking out nine hitters. Bre Peck and Jayme Bailey both homered for the Hokies and combined for four hits and four RBI.

Finally, on Friday evening, Tech downed ECU again, 4-2. The Pirates actually jumped on the Hokies 2-0 in the first inning. Grein settled down, though, going the remainder of the game and didn’t allow another run. She finished the game pitching seven innings, allowing only one hit, walking two and striking out two.

Bailey had two hits for the Hokies.

The Hokies finish out the UNCW Tournament Saturday against Purdue Fort Wayne. After that, Tech gets five days off before heading to Clearwater, Fla., for the TaxAct Clearwater Invitational. Some big-time teams will join the Hokies, including UCLA, Oklahoma State and Arizona.