Wednesday, 12 February 2020 12:41

Greene named Big South's 'Pitcher of the Week' following college debut

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Richmond County native Jenna Greene earned her first college accolade following two wins in two starts for Presbyterian College. Richmond County native Jenna Greene earned her first college accolade following two wins in two starts for Presbyterian College. Photo contributed by Caroline Patterson.

CLINTON, S.C. — The transition from high school to college softball has gone pretty smoothly for Richmond County native Jenna Greene.

The 2019 graduate from Marlboro Academy made her collegiate debut over the weekend with Presbyterian College in the Blue Hose Invitational. 

Greene, a freshman pitcher, got the nod by head coach David Williams to pitch the season opener against Robert Morris University on Friday, and again against Norfolk State University on Saturday.

She picked up a pair of wins to start her college career, and more impressively, was named the Big South Conference’s “Pitcher of the Week” on Tuesday.

“I wasn’t sure what was going to happen, I just wanted to pitch well,” Greene said of her first two starts. “I wasn’t sure about the competition we were playing, and not throwing much in college, I didn’t know how much different it was going to be.

“But I was happy with how I did,” she added. “I was a little surprised when I heard I was named Pitcher of the Week, but I’m super excited. I want to be able to keep performing well and it’s cool to get that recognition.”

Greene explained that the road to the circle was a rocky one in the fall, overcoming a back injury during fall workouts. She said she was limited to just three innings of work in the team’s eight games.

“The fall was really hard I was struggling with a back issue,” Greene explained. “It discouraged me a lot, especially being in a new environment and not playing to my potential.

“I’m doing a lot better now,” she continued. “Workout wise, it’s a big jump from high school with stricter scheduling and more practice, but I’m really enjoying it.”

Known for her riseball, Greene went to work against Robert Morris (Northeast Conference) and pitched a seven-inning complete game shutout. She gave up a triple to Alaina York in the top of the third inning, the only hit Greene allowed to the Colonials.

A one-two-three top of the first was followed by Greene striking out the side in the top of the second after allowing a leadoff walk. She finished the game with nine punchouts, including two in the fourth and sixth innings.

Greene sent the Colonials home with a 3-0 loss when she retired the side in order in the seventh.

An afternoon later, with a light snowfall coming down and the game delayed during the early innings, Greene faced off against Norfolk State (Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference). She held the Spartans to just two hits through six innings of work, and allowed a lone run in the sixth inning on an RBI single to Lily Potter.

Her strikeout pitch was working, as Greene racked up a college-best 11 Ks in her six innings. Greene worked herself out of a bases-loaded jam in the top of the first, punching out two batters including Loren Hudson for the final out.

Greene, a psychology major with a minor in biology, struck out the side in the second and fifth innings. She also recorded two strikeouts in the sixth despite allowing a run. Presbyterian won 3-1.

Through her two starts this season, Greene is averaging 10.8 Ks per seven innings pitched, has an earned run average of 0.54 and is holding opposing batters to an average of 0.77.

According to the Blue Hose’s website, Greene’s 11 strikeouts against Norfolk State was one shy of the program’s single-game record.

“It was snowing during the second game and that was the first time I’d ever played in snow,” Greene laughed. “I was able to get out of the inning which was good.

“It’s hard to say what’s different because we’re not in conference play yet,” she said when asked about comparing high school and college ball. “So far, I think everyone is good at this level and that’s a big change. Now I can’t take any batter off and that’s a big adjustment.”


Kyle Pillar

Sports Editor. IUP communications media and journalism alumni. English teacher, Ninth Grade Academy.

Submit local sports scores to: kpillar@richmondobserver.com

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