PERKINSTON — Rakeya Travis introduced herself to the college softball world Saturday by slugging two home runs, a triple and line drive after line drive propelling No. 13 Mississippi Gulf Coast to a sweep of Dyersburg State at Ross-Smith Field.
Travis (Fr, Poplarville/Poplarville) went 2-for-2 with a home run, a triple and 2 RBI in a 9-1, six-inning victory in Game 1. She followed that up with a 3-for-4 effort in the second game, driving in three including a solo homer.
"That's what we expected," Gulf Coast coach Eric Neel said. "If people will pitch to her this year, it's gonna be a fun time to watch. The kid's really good. She doesn't miss a whole lot."
Neel got two victories in his first two games as the Bulldogs' coach, and Gulf Coast will have two more chances Sunday with another doubleheader against the Eagles. First pitch is set for 10 a.m.
The Bulldogs fell behind in both games, with Kristen Cade (So, Harrison Central/Saucier) giving up a first-inning solo home run in the first contest. It was the only hit she gave up all game. She struck out eight.
Travis' two-run homer in the fourth gave Gulf Coast the lead, and the Bulldogs exploded for seven in the fifth. Briana Shores (So, Richland/Richland) doubled in two runs, Kayla Cade (So, Harrison Central/Saucier) had an RBI single, and Addison Renfroe (So, Lee County/Leesburg, Ga.) drove in three with a double in the gap.
Shores ended the game with an RBI single in the sixth.
DSCC scored twice in the first inning of the second game and once in the third, but A'Mya Stevens (Fr, Northeast Jones/Laurel) settled down and retired 10 straight batters.
Travis' single that rattled the left-field wall made it 3-1, and Marsha' Hunt (So, Philadelphia/Philadelphia) singled her in with two outs. Stevens helped her own cause with a single that tied it up, and Hannah Herrington (Fr, Enterprise/Enterprise) had a two-run double to put the Bulldogs ahead.
Travis had an RBI single in the fourth and a solo homer in the sixth. Hunt doubled to drive in the final run.
"For the first day, it was really good," Neel said. "There were plenty of errors, which we expected, mentally and physically. I thought we swung the bats well, and I thought we pitched really well."
For more information on MGCCC's 10 intercollegiate athletic teams, follow @MGCCCBulldogs on Twitter and MGCCCBulldogs on Facebook, and go to mgcccbulldogs.com.
Sports Information Director
Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College