Virginia Softball Loses Two Close Games
March 11, 2005
HONOLULU – The University of Virginia softball team fell in a pair of close games in the second day of competition Thursday (March 10) in the Hawaiian Airlines Spring Fling Tournament at the Rainbow Wahine Spring Fling Tournament. UVa lost to Notre Dame 3-1 and had its comeback fall just short in a 7-6 loss to Nevada, despite a season-high 13 hits. With the two losses, Virginia falls to 0-3 in the tournament and 5-14 on the season.
In the 3-1 loss to Notre Dame (10-7), the Fighting Irish got on the scoreboard first with a run in the bottom of the second inning. Notre Dame used a double and two singles to score the first run of the game. The Irish scored two more runs in the third to take a 3-0 lead. A two-out single followed by a RBI triple and then a passed ball accounted for the two runs.
The Cavaliers broke up a no-hitter and a shutout with a run in the sixth inning. Third-year center fielder Jessica Taylor (Philadelphia, Pa./Germantown Academy) broke up Steffany Stenglein’s no-hit bid with a single to center field. Second-year second baseman Elea Crockett (Tucson, Ariz./University) followed with a bunt single. After a failed sacrifice attempt, fourth-year catcher Jenn Wynn (Herndon, Va./Herndon) was hit by a pitch to load the bases. Third-year designated player Sara Larquier (Burbank, Calif./John Burroughs) then hit a hard shot to right field for a sacrifice fly that scored Taylor from third base. A groundout ended the threat.
Virginia threatened again in the seventh as it loaded the bases with one out, but could not score any runs. Second-year first baseman Brooke Sorber (Alexandria, Va./Mount Vernon) reached on an infield single with one out. Third-year right fielder Jackie Greer (Portage, Mich./Portage Northern) and Taylor drew back-to-back walks to load the bases, but Notre Dame’s Heather Booth retired the next to batters to register the save.
First-year Whitney Holstun (Escondido, Calif./Escondido) suffered the loss in the circle. She pitched 2.2 innings and allowed three runs (two earned) on five hits while falling to 2-4 on the year. Second-year Coty Tolar (Marietta, Ga./Lassiter) held ND to two hits over the final 3.1 innings. She struck out two and walked two. Stenglein (4-4) earned the win, giving up one run on two hits in 5.2 innings. Stenglein struck out nine batters and walked four.
Against Nevada (8-10), the Wolfpack used three singles to grab a 1-0 lead in the top of the second. Nevada increased its lead to 6-0 with a five-run third inning that included a grand slam by Lindsey Hall. The Cavaliers fought back with four runs in the bottom of the fifth. Larquier accounted for the first two runs with a two-run homer to left field. A RBI double by second-year pinch hitter Lara Rodriguez (Oak Hill, Va./Oakton) plated UVa’s third run and then Rodriguez scored on a Wolfpack error to make the score 6-4. Brittany Lorenzen’s two-out solo homer in the sixth increased Nevada’s lead to 7-4. Larquier led off the last of the seventh with a sharp single to center, her third hits of the game, and after an out, Rodriguez and fourth-year left fielder Lauren Dennis (Encinitas, Calif./La Costa Canyon) delivered key hits to load the bases. A fielder’s choice grounder forced Larquier out at home, but Sorber and Greer came up with clutch back-to-back two-out RBI singles to score Rodriguez and Dennis to make the score 7-6. The Wolfpack got out of the jam and secured the win with a groundout with the bases loaded.
Tolar (3-5) was the tough-luck losing pitcher as she went one inning and allowed one run on two hits. Third-year Erin Horn (Tallahassee, Fla./Leon) pitched 4.2 innings and allowed six runs (five earned) on seven hits with seven strikeouts and two walks. Holstun pitched the final 1.1 innings and struck out two batters while allowing one hit. Tiffany Hoeft (1-5) picked up the win for Nevada. She went 4.2 innings and allowed four runs on seven hits. Jordan McPherson relieved Robyn Ford-Feitz and pitched the final two-thirds of an inning to earn her third save.
The Cavaliers return to action in the tournament on Friday (March 11) when they play host Hawaii at 7:00 p.m. Hawaiian Time. Bracket play for the tournament will be held on Saturday (March 12).