ETSU Softball continues to struggle in Gainesville
Zyskowski
Zyskowski

Saturday, February 16, 2008

GAINESVILLE, Fla. (Feb. 16, 2008) - For the second straight day the ETSU softball dropped a pair of games at the Cox Communications Classic as they fell to 11th-ranked Florida in the first game, 10-1, then followed that up with a 7-3 loss to Stetson in a non-conference battle from the Pressly Softball Stadium on Saturday.

 

ETSU (1-5) has faced some of the best teams in the country throughout the first four games of this classic. The Lady Bucs played then an undefeated club in North Carolina yesterday and faced a nationally ranked Florida Gator club twice in two days. Rounding things out, ETSU wrapped up play with conference rival Stetson, who represented the Atlantic Sun Conference in last year's NCAA Tournament.

 

In the first game, Florida tacked on four runs in the first and second innings, which was all they needed for the victory. In the end, the Gators walked away with a 10-1 win in five.

 

The Gators took advantage of four first inning hits and scored their runs on RBI singles from Aja Paculba, Alexandra Gardiner and Tiffany DeFelice. Freshman Ashley Boyd (Chattanooga, Tenn.) stopped the pain by leaving two runners in scoring position as she forced Corrie Brooks to ground out to third.

 

The Lady Bucs ended their 11-inning scoreless drought in the bottom half of first. Ironically, ETSU scored its lone run with no hits as Cheniece Cason (Moreno Valley, Calif.), who reached on an error, scored by stealing home, clipping the Gator advantage to 4-1. However, another explosive inning from Florida ended any chances for the Lady Bucs to pull of an upset.

 

Florida took a page out of ETSU's book as they plated its first two second inning runs without any hits. The Gators scored the first run on a sacrifice fly and Kristina Hilberth made it 6-1 when she stole home. Then, DeFelice and Gardiner once again posted RBI singles, pushing the Florida lead to 8-1 after an inning and half.

 

Stephanie Brombacher, who struck out seven Lady Buccaneer batters yesterday, held ETSU to only one hit in the final three innings, and Kristin Adkins tossed one perfect inning in relief. Junior Vicki McCoy (Ringgold, Ga.) was the last Lady Buc player to record a hit as she singled in the third. After keeping the Gators off the board in the third, the host team pushed a run across the plate in the fourth and fifth, ending the game with the run rule as they led 10-1 after five innings.

 

Brombacher improved to 5-0 with the win, while Boyd suffered her first collegiate loss. The Chattanooga native allowed 10 runs (four earned) on nine hits and walked seven (two strikeouts).

 

Despite out-hitting the Hatters 11-7 in the nightcap, Stetson was able to take advantage of five ETSU miscues to come out ahead with the four-run victory, 7-3.

 

Stetson, who scored five runs in the first three innings, improved to 6-3 with the win.

 

The Hatters plated one run in the first, and pushed four Stetson runners across the board in the third. Andrea Migliori drove in the first run of the game as her single scored Amy Joyce from third. Joyce's run was unearned as she led off the game with a walk, stole second and advanced to third on a passed ball. Migliori continued to make noise in the third as her solo homerun made it 2-0. Stetson scored the next three runs with two outs, receiving three consecutive singles off sophomore Darci Gilbert (Murfreesboro, Tenn.).

 

After leaving a runner stranded in the second and two runners aboard in the third, ETSU finally mustered enough offense to score a run in the fourth. Caitlin Zyskowski's (Grand Rapids, Mich.) two-out RBI double drove in Katy Jett (Talbot, Tenn.) from second, cutting the lead to 5-1.

 

The Lady Bucs squandered yet another chance to clip into Stetson's lead in the sixth, leaving runners on the corners. Then, the Hatters made it 7-1 by tacking on a pair of runs in the bottom half of the inning. ETSU would not go down without a fight; however, its two-out rally fell short in the seventh. After Kate Powell (Johnson City) hit into a double play, McCoy and Cason followed with back-to-back singles. Sophomore catcher Trisha Massenzo (Russellville, Tenn.) drove them in with her smashing double to right-center. The threat of any rally was ended when Erica Demers recorded her fifth strikeout to close out the game.

 

With the loss, Gilbert dropped to 1-3 on the season after she allowed seven runs (four earned) on seven hits in 6.0 IP. Demers went the distance as she scattered three runs on 11 hits.

 

ETSU wraps up play at the 2008 Cox Communications Classic when they play College of Charleston Sunday morning. First pitch is set for 9 a.m.

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