Late Miscues Cost Memphis in 6-4 Loss to Demons
Feb. 8, 2009
For Immediate Release
Northwestern State (1-3) 020 004 0 - 6 7 3 Memphis (1-3) 030 010 0 - 4 5 2 WP - Grimes (1-2) LP - Valle (0-2)
MOBILE, Ala. - A two-run lead late in the game didn't hold for the University of Memphis softball team as Northwestern State scored four unearned runs in the top of the sixth inning to give the Tigers a 6-4 loss on Sunday. Memphis, playing in the South Alabama Invitational at Jaguar Field, fell to 1-3 on the young season.
The U of M managed just five hits in the game and was led by sophomore catcher Kailey Kassner who had a pair of singles. Sophomore lefty Janelle Valle fell to 0-2 on the year after giving up two earned runs on seven hits with five strikeouts and four walks.
Both teams relied on small ball to score runs early as Memphis recorded a program record four sacrifice hits with all of them coming in a three-run second inning.
Kelee Grimes (1-2) earned her first victory of the season for Northwestern State after allowing four runs on five hits with four strikeouts and no walks.
The Tigers took a one-run lead in the bottom of the second inning and increased it to a 4-2 advantage with another run in the fifth. But with the bases loaded and two outs in the top of the sixth inning, a Memphis infield error allowed two runs to score and extended the inning. Northwestern State scored four runs in the frame to take the two-run lead it never relinquished.
Memphis attempted to make a comeback in both the bottom of the sixth and seventh innings. Junior Leigh Rowan hit a one-out double down the left field line, but the Tigers were unable to advance her past third. In the final inning, sophomore Heather Mott and senior Leila Dolfo both hit deep fly balls to the warning track that were caught as the Demons retired the side in order to end the game.
The Demons took a 2-0 lead in the top of the second inning after loading the bases with nobody out. Northwestern State began the inning with back-to-back singles by Tiffany Ward and Cassandra Poncik and then used a sacrifice fly by Leslie Johnson and a sacrifice bunt from Brittany Card to score the two runs.
Senior Tori Gross began the bottom of the second inning for the Tigers with a single up the middle. The Demons attempted to throw her out at second on a sacrifice bunt to third base by freshman Kamri Chester, but Gross was in safely. Sophomore Maddie McKinley then advanced the two runners to second and third on a sac bunt.
Gross came around to score the first run after a fly ball to shallow left was dropped. A sac bunt by Leandra Hines with runners at second and third scored Chester and the throw to first was wild and went into the dugout allowing sophomore Kim Sirman to score from second.
Dolfo scored the fourth run for Memphis in the fifth inning after reaching base on an error and scoring from third on a wild pitch.
The Tigers will next open its home schedule with a doubleheader against Alcorn State on Saturday at the Tiger Softball Complex.