Late Rally Hands @MemphisSoftball Fifth One-Run Loss of Season
March 8, 2014
DeLAND, Fla. - University of Memphis freshman Christian Novak took a perfect game into the sixth inning, but South Dakota scored runs in the sixth and seventh to defeat the Tigers' softball team 2-1 on Saturday afternoon in the Stetson Classic.
Memphis (8-10) took an early 1-0 lead in the first inning behind a single by freshman Calli Irvin to score sophomore Wheeler Hill from second. Novak then retired the first 15-batters she faced before giving up a solo home run to Kassie Loe to open the bottom of the sixth inning.
The Tigers had five of their six hits in the first three innings and had a stretch of 13-straight retired before senior Kelly Braman collected her second hit in the game with one out in the seventh.
In the bottom of the seventh, Yvon Minogue led off with a single up the middle for South Dakota (9-6). Senior Ellen Roberts entered the game in relief of Novak and got Morgan Hancock to hit into a fielder's choice at second for the first out. As Shelby Keil entered the batter's box to hit, Roberts was charged with an illegal pitch to advance the runner to second. Keil then double to left to score Hancock for the walk-off win.
Memphis has now had seven of its 18 games decided by a run and is 2-5 in those contests.
Hill and Braman both led Memphis with 2-for-3 games at the plate. Novak (3-4) suffered the loss after allowing two runs on three hits with four strikeouts and no walks.
Rachel Cue (4-3) earned the victory in the circle for South Dakota. She allowed one run on six hits with two strikeouts and no walks.
Memphis next plays Stetson today at 5:30 p.m. CT. The Tigers close the tournament on Sunday against Bethune-Cookman at 11 a.m. CT.